FNVW aids in passage of MN antiwar spending resolution


FNVWBy Walker Bristol

“The resolution defends support for veterans while lamenting that Congress currently devotes 59 cents of every dollar of discretionary spending for military purposes.”

A Spanish proverb reminds us: Fire loses the war waged between itself and water. Last week, Foundation Beyond Belief’s current Challenge the Gap beneficiary, Friends for a Nonviolent World (FNVW), extinguished the St. Paul City Council’s incendiary advocacy for a war-centric budget, in favor of domestic and social concerns at home.

Federal BudgetOn Wednesday, October 10, through a unanimous 7-0 vote inspired by a letter-writing campaign from FNVW in partnership with MN Arms Spending Alternatives Project (MNASAP), St. Paul City Council members called on “the Minnesota Congressional Delegation to support shifting federal funding priorities from military operations to meeting the essential needs of our local communities.” Within the resolution, the weight of military spending was given grave attention: that tens of billions of dollars from Minnesota taxpayers have gone to a Pentagon that admittedly lets much of its surplus budget essentially go to waste, certainly more so than other federal programs. This FNVW-backed resolution and its cousins not only inspire peace through stifling the amount of money flowing into arms and violence, but further through improving economic development on American shores and releasing hostility instigated in poverty.

From their blog: “FNVW and MNASAP concur fully with the City Council’s request to shift priorities and with its assessment that ‘military spending impacts the nation’s economic recovery and national debt issues’ and that the nation ‘desperately needs to better balance its approach to national security to include the economic, social, and environmental needs of our communities, state, and nation.’”

The St. Paul reprioritization resolution stands not alone—on November 6, on millions of ballots in Massachusetts, voters will choose whether to instruct their representatives to support the Budget for All, a function of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, which, not unlike the St. Paul resolution, facilitates the transfer of funding away from defense spending—particularly in Iraq and Afghanistan—and toward improving social programs, including veteran stability.

To learn more about the resolution, click here for Twin Cities press coverage. To learn more about FNVW and get involved in their efforts, visit their website. And as always, consider becoming a member and supporting Challenge the Gap in your generous beneficiary donations.