Making the UNA Great again
President’s Message by Steve Watrous
Our chapter has recovered from the COVID spring slump with events and information you’ll surely find interesting, useful and safe. Even something from President Trump!
First, save Sunday afternoon, Oct. 18, for our celebration of the 75th Anniversary of the UN’s founding. It’s on-line this year and you’ll find details in this newsletter. Note that it is NOT a Zoom event, so please start the process of signing on a few minutes early.
The main speaker this year is Sheldon Lubar, a prominent Milwaukee businessman active in political affairs. He’ll be talking about the past, present and progress of the UN.
Lubar came to our attention for a strong pro-peace op-ed he authored in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel three years ago. It’s a needed voice for multilateralism and for peace over war. You can read it in this newsletter and send in a question for Lubar during the panel discussion.
In case you missed our on-line Sept. 12 forum about “defunding” the police, you can see it on YouTube:
The topic was provocative enough that some 30 people tuned in, including a TV station. Channel 58 showed a few seconds of Markasa Tucker’s talk and mentioned both her group, the African American Roundtable, and the UNA. The presentation really clarified the concept of defunding.
Milwaukee UNA chapter members have supported Black Lives Matter actions and were part of the Milwaukee End the Wars Coalition effort to make a statement on the issues. You’ll see it in this newsletter.
Keeping up our schedule of second Saturday educational forums, Nov. 14 will feature post-election analysis by writer John Nichols. We’re also co-sponsoring the annual Armistice Day peace event Nov. 11. World Beyond War Executive Director David Swanson will be the guest speaker.
Dec. 12 is our annual focus on human rights, a coalition effort. Details TBA. A giant for human rights, Ruth Bader Ginsberg, passed recently. Her life is celebrated by our UNA-USA national leader in this newsletter.
It’s not too soon to prepare for our January Annual Meeting. Please let us know if you’d like to talk about joining the chapter board. In just 30 or so hours per year, you could do the world some good.
With the leap in electronic communication, it’s easier than ever to watch the UN in action,
hear from learned speakers, and discuss global issues. I’ve enjoyed Zooms from our national organization and from think tanks like Brookings and Stimson.
You’ll see in this newsletter a review of a 2020 book on global issues, a primer written for a general audience by Robert Haass. He also writes for Foreign Affairs magazine. If you’d like to see Haass’s thoughtful talk about the book for the [Senator] Paul Simon Public Policy Institute, a think tank, let your fingers do the walking to:
The UNA doesn’t endorse candidates but I’d like to close with some words by President Trump concerning the military-industrial complex. At a White House news conference Sept. 7, he declared:
“I’m not saying the military’s in love with me. The soldiers are. The top people in the Pentagon probably aren’t because they want to do nothing but fight wars so all of those wonderful companies -- that make the bombs and make the planes and make everything else -- stay happy.”