Since the beginning of the Bush Administration, we have seen a dramatic shift in governmental priorities. There seems to be a concerted effort by the Administration and its allies in Congress to put the burden of these new priorities on the backs of the working and middle class starta pf society. Evidence for these statements comes from the following facts: the deep dramatic cuts in taxes which have been, in the main, for the benefit of the wealthy corporate segments of society, segments of Congress are trying to make these cuts permanent, and we now hear that the government expects a deficit of 100 billion dollars despite the earlier warnings that the tax cuts would be disastrous. At the same time, the government is increasing, by many billions of dollars, the funds for the military, the war on terrorism, the Intelligence Budget, waiving loans to countries that support our policies, etc. In the meantime, the Bush Administration and its allies in Congress are attempting to use Social Security funds, are already reducing the coverage of Medicare, raising the cuts in social security supports, have already dismantled the Welfare system, refuse to provide funds for job training and jobs, reduced federal support for the education of our children, cut federal loans to students in the Universities, and are doing nothing for the 44 million Americans who have no medical coverage at all. We have also seen the passage of legislation that actually (not possibly) infringes on our rights under the Bill of Rights, and an inhumane policy on war detainees. The Administration's priorities are shifting the burden for funding of social needs onto the states, many of which are deeply in debt, barely covering their budget, and are generally overtaxed.
We, the Congress of Secular Jewish Organizations (CSJO), consisting of organizations and affiliates all over the United States and Canada, urge you, in the strongest terms, to abandon these priorities and return to those of social compassion and caring, i.e., reestablish and strengthen programs that deal with the needs of the American people. We need to reinstate the taxes that return to the judicial and legal system that was established in the Constitution, and use the principles underlying them for protecting the rights of all people under our jurisdiction. The new priorities and policies do not show us or the world that we are a compassionate caring nation.