Education Cuts

Pertaining to the most recent education legislation, I became interested in the topic when I heard a commentary on NPR making a connection between these two areas. In spite of Congressman Boehner’s protestations that contributions he has received had no impact on legislation he has promoted and supported, it appears that he and others in Congress can’t help but be beholden to the hands that are feeding their political livelihoods. This is nothing new, I know, but I personally am becoming more and more sickened with each passing day by the level of disregard for the common, hard-working people of this country by a political system filled with so many people who seem incapable of considering the common good and who seem to serve repeatedly only their own interests and the interests of their backers. I do believe many in Washington, in both political parties, have lost their ability to see clearly. So it is up to all of us in the common life to pay attention, to educate ourselves, to communicate with each other and to communicate with the people who are supposed to be our representatives and remind them that we are here, that we do pay attention and that we are watching what is going on.

Manina, designer
San Francisco



The illegal and immoral occupation of Iraq continues. The Bush administration led our country into Iraq based on faulty justifications. This war has been a disastrous mistake.

Over 120,000 Iraqi civilians have died as a result of this war and occupation, over 2,000 Americans have died and over 15,000 are wounded. Iraqi prisoners have also been beaten, raped and killed. Fallujah was practically destroyed by U.S. forces. Many Iraqis there were literally burned to death by white phosphorus. A majority of Americans now believe the war was a mistake. A recent poll in Iraq revealed that 72 percent of U.S. troops want this war to end as well. Why are our leaders not demanding an immediate end to the bloodshed in Iraq?

It appears that the leaders are waiting for the people to support a serious peace initiative and the people are waiting for some leaders to offer one. This waiting must end.

On March 20, 19 regular citizens entered Sen. Ron Wyden’s Portland office to ask him for that leadership. Since the group was politely refused an audience, or an answer, the group stayed in a nonviolent spirit and manner and was eventually arrested, cuffed, processed and escorted out by Homeland Security. The group now faces possible fines and jail time.

The activists involved are just regular people, a lawyer, retirees, a nurse, professors, a nun, a priest and others, and they offer this sacrifice in the hope that Sen. Wyden will take more serious action to end the occupation and bloodshed in Iraq, and in the hope that other citizens will take action as well. Please contact your senators and congresspersons and ask them to support and pass serious legislation to bring our troops home in 2006, and end the unjust, violent and criminal occupation of Iraq.

Nate Looney
PSU graduate student