116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
The images of Sept. 11, 2001 are etched in our minds. But we need to be more concerned with what we have done with 9/11 than with 9/11 itself.
Yes, we mourn the loss of so many innocent victims, we laud the heroes of the firefighters and so many others, and we will always be outraged at the inhumanity of the attackers. But I don’t think that the 2,977 victims on 9/11 died to usher in a period of perpetual war. We must remember that the tragedy of 9/11 was used as an opportunity for war.
Now, at the end of the war engendered by the events of 9/11, we must be truthful about these past 20 years, and we must use this opportunity to re-imagine how the U.S. can be a force for peace in the world.
As a modest first step, rather than approving a new military budget $37 billion more than the last Trump administration budget, let’s scale it back and use the savings to fund COVID-19 vaccines for the 90 poorest countries in the world where vaccination rates are less than 5 percent. Our reputation and our security would be enhanced.