As the woman pictured in the foreground of the photograph that accompanies Susan Cloke’s reporting on “An Evening with City Council Candidates” [on page 10 of the Santa Monica Mirror’s Oct 15 –21, 2010 edition], I write to convey my gratitude for the Mirror’s sponsoring of the gathering. It is crucial to have our city council candidates listen to and respond openly to residents’ questions, and the evening proved to be substantive. Yet, I was also very frustrated.
An essential question that I have raised never gets addressed in these settings: What is our responsibility as citizens and our council’s responsibility as our representatives to join the international movement for nuclear abolition embraced by the initiatives of Mayors for Peace and Global Zero?
Ms. Cloke rightly determines that it is the local representatives’ job “to make a safer, fairer, healthier, and better environment for all of us,” which she adds, “is a legitimate goal of democracy.” That is why Santa Monica needs to extend its leadership as a sustainable city to lead, with more than 4,000 cities across the world, in the movement for nuclear abolition. That is the act of ultimate sustainability.
Many of us as peacemakers are setting out to work with the City Council, once again, to lead not as a provincial, progressive city but one that understands its vitality depends on reaching beyond its city limits. What could be more of a local concern than to make sure that the lives of Santa Monica’s children, youth, and adults are not targets of nuclear weapons?
Cris Gutierrez, Santa Monica