To oppose Initiative 37 would be to say that there should be no
citizen discussion of the circumstances in which the United States and
the former Soviet Union (Commonwealth of Independent States) might
jointly lead nuclear disarmament efforts, might convert their
crippling war-machine economies into housing, food, health care,
education, and environmental restoration.
Initiative 37 allows District voters to send a message to Congress that we want the United States to work together with the CIS toward worldwide elimination of nuclear weapons, and to earmark the tax dollars saved to serve human needs. It expresses the view that an appropriate way to accomplish global nuclear disarmament is for the United States and the Commonwealth to lead by example.
The initiative does NOT eliminate the discretion of the District's Delegate in Congress to propose a measure containing additional conditions, such as agreement by others besides the Commonwealth.
What Initiative 37 DOES is create an incentive for ordinary citizens to develop solutions to urgent problems that political leaders have not yet solved.
Since the matter concerns the country as a whole, it is appropriate for the people of the District to speak to their Delegate with a strong voice that cannot be ignored, through their votes in favor of Initiative 37.
Do we continue to spend hundreds of billions of dollars on weapons we can only hope will never be used, or do we use that fabulous wealth to build more schools - homes - hospitals - and promote more meaningful careers for our young people?
A strong vote in favor of Initiative 37 will send a message that the voters of the District favor serious commitment to a less dangerous, more humane world.
HILDA HOWLAND M. MASON
Council of the District of Columbia