By Dr. John E. Warren
There is no question that the United States and its allies around the world are committed to supporting the Ukraine people.
We have demonstrated this by the amount of aid and relief already sent, and that which the American people collect and send daily.
But while we help our friends and neighbors abroad, we must not neglect the needs here at home.
To this end, let this be a reminder to the members of the U.S. Senate and the Congress who voted to send $40 billion dollars to support Ukraine in its fight against Russia.
We here in America as the taxpaying citizens who provided the dollars being sent to the Ukraine, are still in need of more than $22.5 billion dollars for COVID relief funds to continue the battle against this virus.
The lack of the requested $22.5 billion dollars means that testing and treatment sites have closed and are closing; it means that Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) will not be available in the amounts needed for the coming surge this fall and winter; it means that those American businesses that responded to the call to produce much needed supplies and equipment here at home instead of imports from China and abroad, now find themselves without government contracts and supplies needed to stay in business; it means that the much anticipated need for vaccines will be delayed because the funding is not there to continue production.
All these things are as well-known to the members of the U.S. Senate and the Republican resistance in the House of Representatives as the crisis in the Ukraine.
The “We don’t need to fund, now” attitude of these people is reinforced by those American people who have taken off their masks in the midst of growing numbers of infections and what appears to be a general “It’s over” attitude.
Once again we are being put on a crisis collision course with a disease that has already claimed more than one million American lives and is set to take more.
Once again, this is a reminder that all these issues come down to whether you Vote or don’t Vote.
The Republicans and the Conservative Right who have overturned Roe and wiped out other Constitutional guarantees at the Supreme Court level and legislated voter suppression laws at the State level, are counting on the masses of the poor, people of color, and that young vote of Whites and others not coming out to vote in the Midterm elections in four months. Or, the 2024 general election, for which the Midterm is a dry run test to retake government and complete the death of Democracy as we know it.
The only question is what will you do now in terms of pressuring the Senate to pass COVID Relief funding, and will you work to find additional candidates for the Senate that will allow us to end the Filibuster? It’s up to all of us. If a Senate seat is not up for election in our state, let’s find one that is, connect, and support those in such states that agree with our desire for change.
Dr. John E. Warren is publisher of The San Diego Voice and Viewpoint.