Clergy from various Portland denominations each spoke briefly, condemning the U.S. misplaced priorities and blatant disregard for human life worldwide.|
First to speak was Rev. Bill sinkford, Senior Minister of First Unitarian Church; The Reverend was followed by Rabbi Joseph Wolf of the Havurah Shalom Community; Mark Knudson, Senior Minister of Augustana Lutheran Church; and Lynne Smouse-Lopez, Senior Pastor at Ainsworth United Church of Christ.
Fundamental to the Press Conference was a long graphic demonstrating the values inherent in the 2012 budget. Taking up over half of the graphic was a large red area portraying the 59% of the budget reserved for military spending.
At the other end of the graphic were the various other areas of expenditures provided for in the budget: 6% for Health and Human Service; 6% for Transportation; 4% to the States; 4% for Education; 4% for Other Programs; 3% for Department of Homeland Security; 3% for Housing and Urban Development; 2% for Justice; 2% for Agriculture; 1% for NASA; 1% for Energy(excludes nuclear weapons program); 1% Labor; 1% Treasury; 1% Interior; 1%Interior; 1% Environmental Protection Agency; 1% Commerce.
The opinion came through loud and clear from all who spoke that the U.S. is not fulfilling it's democratic obligations to it's citizens and also is a force encouraging and fostering violence world wide.
An underlying theme was the assertion that Family Values and Community Values have been subordinated to the profit motive and the actions and long range plans of the U.S. are motivated by Fear, rather than Love.
The last few minutes of this 26 minute video is a response to a question regarding the dependence of our economy on the Military Industrial Complex. Rev. Sinkford immediately put the question in perspective by asserting that our nation is specifically addicted to this value and expenditure.
All the other speakers also followed up with their perspective on this addiction and what we the people must do chart a course more in harmony with our professed democratic and spiritual ideals.
Religious Leaders Speak Out Against Obama's 2012 Budget