Talking Points for Congressional Meetings

Excessive Weapons Manufacturing Filters to Our Local Police Forces

  • Over 5 billion dollars worth of military-grade equipment and weapons have been transferred to local police forces since the 1990s.
  • Over 15,000 people in the U.S. died from gun violence in 2017 alone, with the overall gun-death rate for black males standing at roughly double what it is for white males.

Militarism & Women’s Rights

U.S. Militarism & the Global Refugee Crisis

  • There are over 65 million forcibly displaced people in the world - approximately equal to the populations of France or the U.K - many of whom are fleeing violent conflict and insufferable conditions imposed by the war economy.
  • Conservative estimates state that U.S. interventions in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Pakistan alone since 2001 have displaced 10 million people.

Military Spending at the Expense of other Domestic Programs

  • 64% of U.S. federal discretionary spending is dedicated to war
  • Half of the Pentagon’s budget ($600 billion) went directly to corporations ($304 billion)
  • The CEO’s of Lockheed Martin, Boeing, Raytheon, Northrop Grumman, and General Dynamics received a combined total of nearly $100 million in pay last year.

Military Excess & Environmental Degradation

  • The Department of Defense and its contractors burn and detonate unused munitions and raw explosives in the open air with no environmental emissions controls, releasing toxins near water sources and local communities.
  • Roughly three-quarters of Superfund sites in America are abandoned military facilities or sites that support military needs.
  • The military is unable to adequately and safely dispose of hazardous waste, which highlights how overwhelmed our nation is by its military excess.
  • Water supplies in war zones have been contaminated with oil from military vehicles and depleted uranium from ammunition
  • The U.S. military is one of the largest consumers of fossil fuels.  If it were its own country it would rank 7th in fossil fuel consumption.

Militarism & the Myth of Job Creation

  • Studies have shown that federal spending on domestic programs in health care, education, clean energy, and infrastructure creates more jobs, dollar for dollar, than military spending.
  • For the same amount of money spent on clean energy and healthcare, 50% more jobs would be created; and twice as many jobs would be created in education investments
    • $1 billion in military spending creates approximately 11,200 jobs, compared with 26,700 in education, 16,800 in clean energy, and 17,200 in health care.

Taxes, Militarism, & Subsidizing War

  • As of 2016, nearly a quarter of every tax dollar paid went to military and Pentagon spending.
  • Military contractors pay an average of less than half the federal corporate tax rate.
  • These companies also receive funds from the government through grants, subsidies, and loans.
  • Between one-quarter and one-third of federal indebtedness is due to war spending.
  • Since 2011 through FY2017 Americans have spent $23,386 each on wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, and Syria. For a combined total of $4.3 trillion
    • This does not account for war spending in other parts of the world
    • Future interest payments for this borrowing will add around $7.9 trillion to the national debt

Militarism & the Myth of Safety

  • The U.S. uses the rise and continued brutality groups like the Islamic State as justification for more U.S. military activity in the region, perpetuating a cycle of violent conflict.
  • A study by the FBI in 2012 found that anger over U.S. military interventions abroad was the leading motivation for “homegrown” terrorism.  


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