Sunday, February 20, 2011

Congress to vote on budget: Military or Human rights?
Deborah Dupre
Human Rights Examiner

As Congress prepares to vote Thursday on a major human rights issue impacting American families in its intent to slash the budget by $1 trillion, slash domestic spending by $100 billion that would directly impact Americans' rights, or increase the Pentagon's budget for “global security” through Full Spectrum Dominance - pro-rights citizens are urged to contact their congressional leaders.

“It's hypocrisy at its worst. House Republicans are pushing a budget resolution for 2011 to slash $100 billion for domestic spending while supporting the bloated Pentagon budget,” stated Peace Action West Political Director, Rebecca Griffin.

Role of U.S. government: Serve as Global police or serve Americans for survival?

According to AP, the Pentagon is asking for $553 billion plus $118 billion in war costs and Defense Secretary Robert Gates warned that “the Pentagon will face a crisis if the Congress does not pass a new defense budget for the current year or passes one with significantly reduced funding.”

Americans at home are already facing a crisis due to lack of social services, apparent in rising unemployment, homelessness and food shortages. Patrick Martin, in his Global Research article, "Obama to Propose $1 Trillion in Deficit Reduction, highlights that domestic cuts include key entitlement programs like Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.

Cuts directly impacting American families and their rights, according to Martin, include:

· The Women, Infants and Children program, providing milk and other food for low-income pregnant women, mothers and young children, cut $758 million, about 10 percent

· Head Start preschool education, cut $1.1 billion, about 14 percent

· Community health centers, cut $1 billion

· The District of Columbia budget, cut $240 million, mainly from the Metro system.

“We shrink from our global security responsibilities at our peril,” asserted Gates.

The budget vote is essentially Congress deciding what the role the US government is: A global police service or citizenry service providing education and survival needs. Martin reports that among social programs to be gutted are Pell Grants for working class college students and the LIHEAL program providing heating for low-incolme families and the elderly.

Griffin reports that “some representatives are calling Republican leaders out by proposing amendments to cut military spending, including money for the war in Afghanistan.”

Continue reading on Congress to vote on budget: Military or Human rights? (video) - National Human Rights |

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