An effort to get the Grand Rapids City Commission to pass a resolution opposing the Iraq War has been proposed and is need of public support. Those drafting the resolution have called for people to comment on the resolution at the City Commission’s August 14 meeting:
Some of us have been working for a good while trying to get the Grand Rapids City Commission to pass a resolution (see below for the language we have proposed) opposing the war against Iraq, but they continue to drag their feet.
We now invite all interested in seeing this happen to come to the regular City Commission meeting on Tuesday, August 14, 7pm in Commission chambers, 9th floor, 300 Monroe Av. NW. and speak during the public comment period in support of the resolution.
Note particularly that we are asking the federal government be held accountable by sending a representative to speak to the community concerns we have regarding this war. And while we are not tied to the specific language, we do want to see them take action, and for that action to be as strong as possible.
Anyone wanting background sources for the information in the resolution as worded, feed free to contact Richa at richa [ at ] safe-mail.net or 616-245-8633.
Resolution Regarding the U.S.A. War in Iraq
WHEREAS, the Federal Executive Branch has persistently misrepresented the war on Iraq in a manner that suggests incompetence if not deliberate deception, which misrepresentation has severely eroded public support for that war; and
WHEREAS, the Federal Executive Branch is seriously considering further war upon equally shaky grounds; and
WHEREAS, the City has suffered severe cuts and faces yet more cuts in basic services including police and fire, parks and recreation programs including pool shutdowns, and CDBG funding for neighborhoods; and
WHEREAS, Grand Rapids’ share of costs for the war would be more than enough to reverse these and other recent and proposed cutbacks if returned to the City; and
WHEREAS, thousands of U. S. soldiers have risked and in many cases given their lives for the ideals put forth justifying the war, including five Grand Rapids residents killed (four in the past year), which ties our city with Flint for most killed in Michigan; and
WHEREAS, estimates range from about 60,000 civilians to as many as 700,000 Iraqi people killed in the present war, all of them human beings made in God’s image who live and dream and suffer much as we or anyone else; and
WHEREAS, an unknown number in our community and in our country, but many times more than those killed, have been physically and/or psychologically wounded; and
WHEREAS, returning war veterans are known to be much more likely than those who are not war veterans to commit acts of family and other violence in the community; and
WHEREAS, The Grand Rapids City Commission has confronted the federal government in the past when deception was used to pull us into a destructive and unnecessary war; and
WHEREAS, the citizens of Grand Rapids wish to reinforce and enhance a long tradition of attempting to take moral responsibility, therefore
BE IT RESOLVED:
1. That the City Commission request a White House representative to come to Grand Rapids for the purpose of addressing community concerns about the war on Iraq and related policies, taking the time needed to fully respond to those concerns as presented by Commissioners and other community leaders; and
2. That the City Commission address a letter to both the Executive and Legislative branches of our Federal Government urging them to be as courageous in extricating us from the hostilities in Iraq as federal leaders have been in getting us into such hostilities, and
3. That in the same letter the City Commission urges both branches to begin reversing the priorities established by this war by allocating a fixed portion of the federal income tax revenues to the states and the cities. Such an allocation, which may be through a revival of General Revenue Sharing, through existing Community Development Block Grants, or by other means, would represent money previously spent in Iraq now to be spent in solving our domestic problems, and
4. That in the same letter the City Commission further urges both branches to take much greater care before involving the country in any further wars.