We are in denial about nuclear war.  Because the death of the planet is unthinkable, we just don’t think it.  But nuclear activists such as the Kings Bay Trident Plowshares Seven do: they not only think, but act.  (See https://kingsbayplowshares7.org/.

And you can, too, by collaborating with people around the world who are working to pass the UN Treaty on the abolition of nuclear weapons.  (See http://www.icanw.org/.)Seventy-nine non-nuclear nations have signed Treaty but our government refuses to even consider it.  So we’re going local and exerting pressure from below, starting with the Evanston City Council on December 9. Please join us!

The resolution to be introduced by Alderperson Eleanor Revelle says, “Nine nations together have over 14,000 nuclear weapons in their arsenals, and the use of even a tiny fraction of these weapons could have catastrophic human and environmental consequences.”  After asking our government to ratify the treaty, it further urges our congressional representatives to speak out loudly for five specific anti-nuclear measures:

•renouncing the option of using nuclear weapons first;

•ending the sole, unchecked authority of any president to launch a nuclear attack;

•taking U.S. nuclear weapons off hair-trigger alert;

•cancelling the plan to replace its entire arsenal with enhanced weapons; and

•actively pursuing a verifiable agreement among nuclear-armed states to eliminate their nuclear arsenals.

 If we eliminate nuclear weapons and the tremendous infrastructure surrounding them, we’d have the ability and the funds to address climate catastrophe, healthcare, bridge and road repair, job creation, and all the zillion and one problems that beset our country and our world. Speaking at Nagasaki on November 24, Pope Francis said, “In a world where millions of children and families live in inhumane conditions, the money that is squandered and the fortunes made through the manufacture, upgrading, maintenance and sale of ever more destructive weapons are an affront crying out to heaven.”

Want to learn more?  Come to the Evanston Public Library’s Falcon Room at 1:30 on Sunday, December 8 to hear David Combs of Union of Concerned Scientists and to view a film, “The Beginning of the End of Nuclear Weapons.”

Then attend the Council’s Human Service Committee’s meeting at 6:00 on Monday, Dec. 9 to stand in solidarity with two Evanston citizens as they speak to the Resolution.  Come again at 7:15 on Monday, January 13 when the City Council will vote on the Resolution. When it passes, Evanston will be the first municipality in the Midwest to join an international grass-roots coalition. (See https://www.preventnuclearwar.org/. As Pope Francis says, “The possession of nuclear weapons is immoral.”  Let’s live our values and abolish them!

Rosalie Riegle, St. Nicholas Peace and Justice Committee