Paul  Weyrich

Many conservatives agree that since the mid-20th Century the Federal Government has grown too large, its bloated bureaucracies unaccountable to the American people and its oversight too broad vis-à-vis its Constitutional prerogatives. Unfortunately, Congress soon may add a new bureaucracy to the Federal Government. And this would not be another run-of-the-mill bureaucracy but a perilous threat to America's future.

Representative Dennis J. Kucinich (D-OH) has proposed H.R. 808, the Department of Peace and Non-Violence Act. The bill would establish a "Department of Peace and Non-Violence...headed by a Secretary of Peace and Nonviolence appointed by the President with the advice and consent of the Senate." The mission of the Department would be to..."hold peace as an organizing principle; endeavor to promote justice and democratic principles to expand human rights; and develop policies that promote national and international conflict prevention, non-violent intervention, mediation, peaceful resolution of conflict, and structured mediation of conflict." H.R. 808 also would establish within the Department an "Intergovernmental Advisory Council on Peace and Non-violence [to] provide assistance and make recommendations to the Secretary and the President concerning intergovernmental policies relating to peace and non-violent conflict resolution; a Federal Interagency Committee on Peace and Non-violence; [and] Peace Day." The purpose of Peace Day would be to urge all citizens to observe and celebrate the blessings of peace and on that day to strive to create peace.

While this may sound like a joke, the bill currently has 70 co-sponsors. And it appears that some liberal Members of Congress eagerly anticipate establishing such a Cabinet-level department. Representative Barney Frank (D-MA) recently told a local newspaper that the Democratic Majority in the next Congress may slash the budget for the Department of Defense by up to 25%, thereby eviscerating the American military and leaving the Nation weak and defenseless. Of course, with the new Department of Peace and Non-Violence (DPN-V), perhaps financed by the funds cut from the Department of Defense, America would have no need of a military. Direct diplomatic talks between the DPN-V and "rational" authoritarians like Vladimir Putin, Hugo Chavez and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad would solve all international problems.

Paul Weyrich

Paul M. Weyrich is the late Chairman and CEO of the Free Congress Research and Education Foundation.
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