Promising development – A revived U.S. antiwar movement. Are social workers in or out?

A sizable antiwar protest occurred in Washington D.C. a week ago. Thousands of demonstrators showed up at Lafayette Park (in front of the White House), calling for an end to U.S. war making, and especially to its perpetuation of the Russia-Ukraine war. The occasion was the 20th anniversary of the U.S.’s illegal invasion of Iraq – an invasion we now know was based on lies concerning Saddam Hussein’s possession of “weapons of mass destruction.”

I hope the protest represents the revival of a powerful U.S. antiwar/peace movement. If it does, this is very good news. Recognizing the horrific short and long-term consequences of war, and the Ukraine War in particular, does not make you a supporter of Vladimir Putin, or Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. It means only that you realize the ugly truth at the heart of the protest rally’s theme – Fund people’s needs, not the war machine. In the midst of an expanding multi-dimensional American social crisis, the nation is on track to spend one trillion dollars per year on “defense.” Millions of Americans are homeless, millions are food insecure, millions have no health care coverage – yet the government contracts with the weapons manufacturers grow fatter every year.

One big disappointment: As far as I can see, among the 200+ organizations that endorsed the demonstration, none are evidently connected to the social work profession or led by social workers. Have we given up on peace as a priority? How can we, and still claim to be champions of justice and defenders of the downtrodden?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s