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Treaty to ban the bomb

Seventy-two years ago, the United States became the first and only country to use nuclear weapons.

On Aug. 6 and Aug. 9 in 1945, we bombed Hiroshima and Nagasaki killing hundreds of thousands of innocent people.

We tell ourselves it was necessary. It was to save lives and end the war. We tell ourselves that nuclear weapons kept us safe during the Cold War and are necessary for our defense today. But these rationalizations ring hollow when examined closely. There were alternatives in 1945, and there are alternatives today to perpetuating the threat of a nuclear holocaust.

Instead of getting rid of nuclear weapons, we are spending $1 trillion to upgrade them and their delivery systems. We are making them more usable. Our president has the sole authority to order a nuclear strike, and he thinks nuclear weapons are usable. Having one man, especially this one, with the power to end life on earth should terrify all of us.

In July, 122 nations signed a treaty to ban nuclear weapons. The United States did not participate.

America should be leading this effort not opposing it. We should sign the treaty to ban the bomb.