Nuclear Weapons, Militarism, and the “War on Terror”
PSR Sacramento works toward the elimination of nuclear weapons, the elimination of war as a means of conflict resolution, and the prevention of diversion of vital resources toward war and preparation for war. We oppose the discredited concepts of “pre-emptive war” and the so-called “War on Terror.” It has been repeatedly shown throughout history that conventional military force breeds terror, rather than halts it. We decry the unjust, unnecessary, and counter-productive attacks launched on Afghanistan and Iraq by the U.S. led coalition following the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. We we mourn for the millions of innocent victims on all sides of these conflicts. (See the March 20, 2015 report, Body Count, released by PSR and IPPNW). We support working through the United Nations and the International Criminal Court to resolve international conflicts. We believe that the most effective way to reduce the threat of terrorism is to work through programs such as the United Nations Development Program to address the root causes of terrorism, including fostering humanitarian programs that address illiteracy, poverty, social injustice, and degradation of the environment, and promoting local public safety programs as well as international peace-keeping operations based upon democratic institutions and the rule of law.
We believe that global climate change, the pollution of our air, water, and soil, and the extinction of other species resulting from the encroachment on their habitats by human society present a critical threat to our planet’s ecosystem. We promote safe, renewable forms of energy that reduce pollution and our dependence on oil. We support family planning and maintenance of human population at levels which do not threaten other life on our planet. We work to reduce toxic hazards in our communities, our schools, and our workplaces, including the medical care setting. And we support sustainable agriculture, without use of harmful pesticides and other chemicals. We believe that we have a responsibility to future generations to leave the planet in a better condition than we found it.
Gun Violence Prevention
Gun violence is at epidemic levels in our state and our country. Every year, approximately 30,000 U.S. civilians, including about 3,000 Californians, are killed by firearms. The rate of firearm-related deaths for children ages 15 and under is almost 12 times higher in the U.S. than the rate in the other leading 25 industrialized countries of the world. Handguns, in particular, account for about 80% of all firearm-related deaths, but only a third of firearms owned. While many people keep guns in their home for “protection,” there is overwhelming evidence in the medical and law enforcement literature showing that guns in the home are much more likely to be used to kill, injure, or intimidate a household member than to protect against an intruder. PSR Sacramento works to reduce gun violence by educating policy makers and the general public concerning the risks of guns in our communities and in our homes, and by supporting sensible firearm regulations.
Universal Health Care
PSR/Sacramento endorses the principle that access to timely, high quality, necessary health care, without regard to one’s income or ability to pay, is a basic human right. We believe that it is deplorable that the United States is the only industrialized nation in the world that does not provide some form of health care coverage for all of its citizens, yet spends two to three times more per capita than other developed countries on health care expenditures, and ranks lower than most other developed countries in global measures of health care quality. We believe that if our state and our country were to adopt an efficient, not for profit, universal health care system, it should be possible to provide excellent health care coverage for every resident of our country for the same total expenditure that is now leaving 15-20% of our residents uninsured and many more under-insured.