“Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children. This is not a way of life at all in any true sense. Under the cloud of threatening war, it is humanity hanging from a cross of iron.” — Dwight D. Eisenhower, April 16, 1953.

I hope, as you pay your taxes, you think about President Eisenhower’s quote that holds truer now than ever, 68 years later. I hope you will think about; the $1.7 trillion of your tax dollars slated to be spent on brand new nuclear weapons; the 800 military bases in 70 countries that your tax dollars are paying for; the AUMF (Authorization for the Use of Military Force) signed by N.H. Sens. Shaheen and Hassan, spending $700 billion of your tax dollars this year alone; the ever growing trillions of your tax dollars spent on actual war and caring for our veterans, as we should (we might consider creating less veterans by engaging in less wars); and on and on and on. Have you ever wondered exactly how much of your tax dollars are spent on war? We suggest a war tax on your IRS tax form 1020, line 8c; 10 percent of your adjusted gross income. This way, you will know how much of your tax dollars are being spent on war.

If your reason for spending huge sums of money on the military (war) is security, how was it possible for 19 individuals to hijack four airplanes on Sept. 11, 2001, and change the world? All that money spent and a simple low-tech hijacking of airplanes still occurred. Off to war we went. Makes ya wonder, doesn’t it?

To cite President Eisenhower (Jan. 17, 1961) one more time: Beware “the military-industrial complex” — It’s eating you alive!

While you are making your investment in war, think about all the life-affirming ways that your tax dollars could be spent, and lastly, I hope you will join us at our peace vigil, held every Saturday (20 years now) on Central Square, Keene, from 11 a.m. to 12. See you then.