A pie of peace

Last Friday, May 19, a small group of people brought a pie to the north Chico offices of Rep. Wally Herger. It was a demonstration, but a very gentle one—a lobbying effort more than a protest rally. The diplomatic approach was fitting, because this group came in peace and for peace and in that spirit brought a gift, an all-American apple pie.

The group’s goal was to encourage Herger to get behind the national effort to establish a U.S. Department of Peace by signing onto H.R. 3760, a bill now before the House that would establish such a department.

And why not a Department of Peace? As a nation, we devote hundreds of billions of dollars every year to war preparations and combat but spend little or nothing financially on ways to foster peace. The budget for the new department would be just 2 percent of the Department of Defense budget. If we put more energy and money into waging peace, we certainly would put less into waging war.

The proposed department, its backers say, would not be limited to international diplomacy but also would work hard to prevent acts of violence in our communities through education and other means. It currently has 63 backers in the House, including 12 from California, and two in the Senate.

We know Rep. Herger values peace among people. We hope he puts his power where his values are by supporting H.R. 3760.