Defunding of the Peace Corps

Every day another Republican Party politician or right-wing cable news pundit tells us that the government’s budget deficit is out of control and we have to cut Medicare, cut Social Security, cut health care, cut every program the majority of Americans depend on.  I won’t respond here except to say that shared sacrifice means raising taxes on the top 1% income bracket and/or doing away with corporate welfare for multi-national corporations that make tremendous profits but still get entitlements from our tax dollar.  I do want to let you know about the gutting of a program that recently celebrated its 50th anniversary and has been widely praised for spreading peace and understanding throughout the world.  I am talking about the Peace Corps, the program that sends people to third world countries to help educate and care for the citizens of those countries that seek our help, the program that helps other countries understand that every one in the USA is not a right wing nut job, and that there are people in the USA who have compassion for others.  You know, the PEACE CORPS!!!

Very likely you haven’t heard about the budget cuts to the Peace Corps; it only affects a small number of people and the administration and the news media aren’t talking about it.  I happen to know because my daughter applied for the Peace Corps and was accepted; however, her placement was initially slowed because the federal budget wasn’t passed.  Last week my daughter received a letter from the Peace Corps indicating that due to extreme (my word) budget cuts, no one will be placed until June 2012.  For an entire year no one will be placed into countries for peaceful missions.  Considering the lack of backbone demonstrated by the White House in the recent budget negotiations, it seems likely that the date will either be extended once again or else the program will be done away with as quietly as these massive cuts were introduced.

We degrade the values of this country when we fund wars, killing and destruction while doing away with programs that seek peaceful solutions to the world’s problems.  I think the Nobel Peace Prize committee should ask for the medal back from Obama, because his actions show that he does not believe in PEACE.  He is a warmonger just like Bush.  The budget cuts to the Peace Corps while spending trillions to fund three wars shows us the true measure of Obama: his words are meaningless in light of his actions.  Meanwhile, this country is turning into a third world nation with wealth isolated in the hands of a tiny number of plutocrats, a dwindling middle class, and working people increasingly beset with unemployment and poverty. Cutting the Peace Corps budget is another nail in that coffin.


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