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Letter: America can no longer be considered a world leader

America can no longer be considered a world leader

June 1 is the date that American exceptionalism died. We are no longer a world leader. We no longer seek to dominate new technical innovations. Our short-term national interests trump concern for the world’s best interest.

The repudiation of the Paris climate accord signals the start of the American exception era. Nearly 200 countries have signed this agreement; the U.S., Syria and Nicaragua are the exceptions. The scientific community throughout the world is nearly unanimous on climate change; President Trump and his GOP colleagues are the exceptions.

Likewise, all of the countries of NATO agreed with the Article 5, Mutual Defense provision; again our president was the exception. Following the G-7 meeting, six nations left on the same page; again Trump took exception.

In his announcement on the climate accord, Trump bragged that the U.S. will no longer be laughed at by other countries. Further, that he was elected to represent the people of Pittsburgh and not Paris. Reaction to his decision was immediate. He was rebuked by world leaders and 260 major U.S. corporations. Three U.S. states and 61 cities have pledged to comply with the Paris accord. Future generations will be buying renewable energy technology from China, which is positioning itself to dominate this industry.

Does it surprise anyone that the president’s position supports the oil economies of Saudi Arabia and Russia? Does it surprise anyone that Trump toadies, Reps. Chris Collins and Tom Reed, proclaimed their support for his ill-conceived position? I only hope that voters who accept science, who look to the future and not the past, who are concerned for all people and who see this example of nationalism at its worst will send a strong message to the GOP and Trump in the next election. The future of the world depends on an informed and active electorate.

Robert McGowan


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