Support No First Use

We might think that the crisis with Iran is over. Sure, we’ve stepped off the brink of immediate war which was possible less than a week ago. In addition to advocating for peace with Iran, we have another urgent task. As it stands, the president can command the use of a nuclear weapon whenever, wherever. No one should have the power to wipe out cities and communities by whim or miscalculation — be it Trump or any president. No First Use would end the president’s sole nuclear authority as well as the U.S.’s role as a global nuclear aggressor.

The end of the world has no party affiliation. The issue of one individual being able to jumpstart a catastrophic nuclear war has no politics. This isn’t about who is in office, it’s about how no one person should hold that much power. This is a great opportunity for Congressman Walden can rise above partisan politics and support No First Use (H.R.921).

Last year, I visited Iran with a citizen-peace delegation. Iranians don’t want war and are warm and welcoming people. One of my Iranian friends just shared this: “My dear non-Iranian friends, these are very difficult and hard times for any Iranian inside or outside of the country. We’ve been bombarded with the most terrible news of killing and shooting, massive arrests and long sentences, devaluation of our currency, sanctions, PLANE CRASH, flood and shadow of the devastation is being felt closer than any other time above our beautiful country… We’ve lost track of deaths and casualties and depression and anxiety is hanging on us. If you know Iranians around you, reach out, ask them how they’re feeling, support them even if it’s just saying a few caring words. Beyond the headline of the news we’re human beings, flesh and body and this pain is too much to be tolerated alone.”

The question is, can we agree on supporting a bill that would make my friend, Americans, Iranians and people all over the world safer and more secure? Please support No First Use.

Patrick Hiller

Hood River

‘Senators, stay on the job’

The last few years have brought increasing political partisanship. It’s worn down our energy and worn down our trust in each other and in our elected officials. I hope that in our upcoming short legislative session we can remember how much we really need each other and how much we rely on a well-functioning state government.

Without a well-functioning state government, we won’t have many basic things we want and need — e.g., emergency services when wildfires and natural disasters strike, functioning public schools and colleges, and access to health and family services. We can’t afford to give up these things for the “pleasure” of not working together.

When state senators walk off the job as they did last summer, they abandon work on basic programs and other needed measures that we all need. Our senators should serve and protect us. They should not shut down the government. Senators, don’t walk out on your responsibilities. Stay on the job in 2020.

Fran Finney

Odell

Dance in the streets

You know, I keep reading these letters criticizing President Trump for taking out Soleimani. Should have been done a long time ago. Presidents Bush and Obama followed him and choose to leave the status quo for their own political reasons. He has been declared a terrorist, sanctioned by the Europeans and has targeted Americans, Muslims, Kurds and his own people who just happen to disagree. Do the research.

I suspect that there were many hearts dancing in the streets of Iran. Does just the blind hatred of Trump also blind you to the victims of this terrorist? One only needs to listen to some of the Iranian refugee stories and this elimination would make you dance in the streets. I would argue the world is now a bit safer.

Steve Nybroten

White Salmon

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