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The Op-Ed by State Rep. Gael Tarleton and Joe Cirincione argued for cutting the massive US nuclear arsenal to a smaller number of nuclear weapons. It stated, “If Washington state were a sovereign nation, it would be the third largest nuclear weapon state in the world.” The reason for this is the large number of nuclear weapons maintained at the submarine base at Bangor on the Hood Canal. The existence of such a large stockpile of nuclear weapons so close to Seattle and its immense destructive power should instill in all Washingtonians an abiding interest in seeing the world’s nuclear stockpile being reduced.

The U.S. is about to embark on a $1 trillion upgrade to its nuclear arsenal. Investing so much tax money on these horrible weapons systems means they will likely be around for most or all of the 21st century. One can just imagine how $1 trillion of tax money could be used for more constructive purposes, such as infrastructure repair, research into cancer and other diseases and paying off student debt, among other uses.

But the most pressing reason for demanding an end to all nuclear weapons in the world is the immense danger they pose to all life on earth. If these weapons are allowed to exist indefinitely, at some point they could be used — either because of madness, technical failure, or communication failure. The world can ill afford the threat they pose.

Tom Krebsbach, Brier