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An Open Letter to the U.S. Voter:
Do Your (Global) Duty on Nov. 5

By Garry Davis

The 1996 U.S. Presidential election is less than six weeks away. As good citizens, many of you will soon be called upon to choose your next leader.

It is mission impossible. How can a national president presume to propose and execute laws when lawlessness dominates the political environment surrounding his nation? It is like trying to command a sinking ship in a hurricane-swept sea. A national presidential election in today's anarchic world is more than a travesty; it is a betrayal of the popular will for peace. Exclusionary nation-states are literally ungovernable in today's inclusionary global village. They are reduced to mere war machines which dominate the entire political/economic/social landscape.

Consider this: Messrs. Dole, Clinton and Perot are declaring not only their willingness but their ability to lead the sole military superpower in its role, as columnists are wont to put it, as the "world's policeman." But the global community is not the exclusive domain of the U.S. President nor of you, the United States voter. Despite the illusion of power, the world does not revolve around Washington, D.C.

Though no national presidential candidate can admit it-and all will in fact vehemently deny it-the only viable "bridge" to the 21st century is a democratically governed world community.

"This country faces all kinds of problems that politicians are afraid to address honestly," writes Anthony Lewis in The New York Times for September 9, citing, "the entitlements we cannot afford, the growth of a self-perpetuating underclass in our great cities, a ruinous drug policy." The columnist concludes that "underlying the particulars is a peculiar condition of our democracy: disaffection from the very idea of government."

Lewis neglected to insert the word "national" before government. We know that "national security" is a euphemism for war. We know that money spent on that illusion deprives a hungry world of sustenance, a homeless world of shelter, and, in short, an almost-doomed world of any hope for survival.

As have all his predecessors since World War II, the next U.S. President will inherit the power to eliminate all life on Earth. Yet he will have no power to make a peaceful world, since that requires the expressed political will of the people of the world...yourself included.

Ironically, the first duty of a newly elected President is to swear allegiance to the Constitution of the United States. The world community, however, is not governed by a constitution. It is anarchic. Despite frequent allusions to "international law," the nation that Clinton or Dole will govern as Chief Executive exists in a lawless world community. The next President's second duty, then, should be to call immediately for a world constitutional convention, mainly to outlaw war between states. Neither Clinton nor Dole, of course, has any such intention.

Furthermore, the new U.S. leader will be inheriting a bankrupt nation, one with a $5 trillion public debt (to which $200 billion more will be added this fiscal year). The United States is a country where military budgets continue to dominate and drive the national economy and where social programs have declined disastrously in direct proportion. And while both Dole and Clinton pander to anti-government sentiments, they aggressively seek the power that government affords. The Dole/Gingrich subtext is to "get government out of your lives," while Clinton claims "the era of big government is over," all the while feeding the voracious military appetite.

The next occupant of the White House will enjoy a responsibility far beyond his legal mandate as Chief Executive. As head of a superpower, he must cope with the world-at-large-both with his fellow heads of state and his fellow citizens of the world community. Like it or not, he will have to be responsive to their needs as well as those of his U.S constituency. In this regard, he has only two options: use military or lawful means.

Therefore, those of you who are United States voters have an awesome responsibility to your fellow citizens of the world in the coming election. You are dead right to be skeptical, even distrustful of national government. Indeed, as I have written many times in this space, your national "citizenship" is in reality a collective suicide pact. It signifies that you have been reduced to subject status, your vaunted status as citizen canceled by the alleged sovereignty of the state.

Many of you refuse to vote on election day. Most of you have serious misgivings about taxation for the purpose of fueling the military machine and you question military might in general as a viable response to global problems. But did you know that your very Constitution provides for your entry into a higher level of citizenship-world citizenship-to address your real problems as we enter the 21st century?

The Ninth Amendment provides for the claim to unenumerated rights "retained by the people." The inalienable right to exercise political choice is your realistic and legitimate civic "bridge" to the next century, wherein all humanity can be protected by just law.

History has not seen a more propitious moment for a world-class leader to emerge on the American political scene.

Yet consider this: There has never been, nor will there ever be, any realistic debate between the major candidates on the issue of war and peace. For neither Clinton nor Dole can endorse the only solution to the problem of war: the elimination of the condition of world anarchy which is war's breeding-ground. In short, it is impossible for a U.S. Presidential hopeful to endorse a democratic world government.

There is thus no viable choice between Dole and Clinton in terms of world peace. Both endorse a "strong" military, and continue to call on you to hand over your hard-earned money to the most monstrous military machine ever built on planet Earth. Both leading candidates justify this insane spending in the name of "national security," the most insidious oxymoron of this or any century.

This writer was a World Citizen candidate for U.S. President in 1988. The central premise of my admittedly quixotic Presidential campaign was that if humanity is indeed in danger of destruction, then humanity itself must be acknowledged as the ultimate sovereign on this, its home planet. In other words, stateless humanity must live if you and I are to survive. We are, whatever our nationality, totally dependent on humanity's survival. No national presidential candidate can admit this awesome truth. But national voters can embarrass would-be leaders for remaining silent on this most important of all issues.

In 1988, I maintained that the U.S. Founding Fathers created an experiment they intended to be extended to the world level when history dictated both its necessity and its practicability. Otherwise, neither the Declaration of Independence nor the Bill of Rights has any intrinsic historic or fundamental meaning. If the inalienable human rights of "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness" are not protected by global government with "the consent of the governed," then America has not fulfilled its sacred historic mission.

Furthermore, humanity is already structured biologically by what we term "natural world laws." The ecological awareness arising in the 1960s confirms our essential planetary unity. It follows that humanity is already legitimate in its wholeness and unity. For, if humanity were not legitimate, then the sovereign power underlying your national constitution, deriving from "the people" would not itself be legitimate. True Americans in a world today faced with total annihilation will exercise their inalienable right to choose a new political allegiance in accordance with the Ninth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

A couple of years ago in Stockholm, 37 well-known personalities, including a former U.S. President, Jimmy Carter, endorsed the concept of "global governance." Even the U.N.'s Universal Declaration of Human Rights, to which the United States is subject, provides for a "social and international order."

In short, a governed world is the only way to avoid a final catastrophe.

For the record, both as World Coordinator of the World Government of World Citizens and as your fellow world citizen, I urge you to insist that Bob Dole and Bill Clinton state a position on this vital subject. For, if candidates for public office remain silent on the problem of world peace, then they renounce the right to represent the public trust, and you will have been betrayed . . . again.

Ralph Waldo Emerson wisely wrote, "Government follows haltingly, and at a distance, the will of the people." This election, let's be sure to express our global will.

Yours sincerely,
Garry Davis

At the annual convention of Veterans for Peace, held August 30-Sept. 1 at Columbia, Mo., VFP member Garry Davis, the official delegate from the Vermont chapter, attempted to introduce a resolution to change the wording in the VFP constitution from "abolish war" to "outlaw war." The presiding chairman, President Sandy Kelson, ruled the resolution "out of order" as it required a constitutional amendment so had to be formally presented to the membership in advance. Davis distributed "I am a World Citizen" buttons to fellow members.

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