Saturday, April 20, 2024

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Consideration of nuclear nonproliferation treaty: what a colossal waste of time & misplaced energy


We’re sure that the proponents of a supposed United Nations Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons are devout and sincere in their support for wanting lots of cities, including Burlington, to adopt local resolutions in support of the idea.

We also think they are likely not very realistic – neither about the substance of the so-called treaty itself, nor about its prospects for adoption much less implementation, nor especially about whether the Burlington city council’s opinion on the matter will have one whit of influence on anyone.

We believe this issue is not appropriate, neither as a substantive matter, nor as a legitimate agenda item for Burlington’s city council.

The city needs to be dealing with basic, essential city services. Those, alone, should take care of filling most of the time at city council meetings.

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If there’s anything that should make one take a second, critical look at any resolution on any topic, it is the prefatory phrase “United Nations.”

Countless hours are wasted at the United Nations in New York City with endless debates about meaningless resolutions that aren’t going to make one iota of difference in any person’s, much less any nation’s, existence.

Burlington’s city council has already burned up a half hour or so cumulatively at three city council meetings hearing vague homilies about this meaningless statement on nuclear non-proliferation statement.

And are we to believe that China and Russia, for instance, which possess nuclear weapons, are actually going to disarm? Much less that they are going to do so as a result of a United Nations pontification on the subject.

Even under former mayor Ian Baltutis, who had lots of his own special hobby horse issues, the council did not waste time with these kinds of resolutions.

As mayor Jim Butler warned this week, if the council is going to start entertaining such far-fetched and extraneous issues, where will it end?

Liberal activists aren’t the only ones with their pet resolutions that they’re willing to talk endlessly about.

We can only imagine the plethora of issues on all manner of other national and international issues that the council will be asked to weigh in on if Burlington’s council is gullible enough to entertain actually taking this one seriously or voting on it.

Enough time has been wasted in Burlington on this effort already.

If, in fact, the matter comes up again, the council needs to act promptly to scuttle any further discussion – permanently – and turn to issues that actually concern and affect most Burlington residents.

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