Letter: Leaving Paris agreement puts America last

Despite his repeated promises to “put America first,” President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord puts our nation dead last.

Last in acknowledging the overwhelming science that has established the link between fossil fuels and climate change.

Last in honoring our word as a nation, causing — for the first time in history — our allies worldwide to doubt our trustworthiness in honoring our agreements.

Last in demonstrating leadership and garnering the international prestige that goes along with it, at a time when Germany, France, and China are more than willing to replace us as world leaders.

Last in embodying that most fundamental of Christian values, compassion, by turning our back on the world’s poorest who initially will bear the brunt of the impacts of climate change, including droughts, floods, food shortages and political turmoil.

Last in acknowledging the dangers climate change represents for America’s security, a danger recognized by the U.S. Department of Defense.

And last in recognizing the economic opportunities a bold response to climate change would represent for American businesses and workers.

Far from putting America first, Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord places us last among nations, squarely in the dubious company of war-ravaged Syria, one of only two other countries to officially reject the agreement.

As the president likes to say, God bless America. With ill-informed and reckless decisions like this one, heaven knows, we’re certainly going to need every blessing we can get.

Jonas Magram

Climate Action Southeast Iowa


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