July 27, 2004
For a sustainable future where rainforests can thrive and provide homes for primates, and where hope and joy can shine in the faces of children who live without fear of war, higher levels of international cooperation are needed. Science and technology have granted us unprecedented power to alter the environment and build weapons of unimaginable destructive capacity. Yet we also have the ability to govern our own ingenuity with the reigns of law, guided by universally recognized human values.
Over the past several months, the two of us have engaged in at least nine public dialogues on the theme of Global Responsibility: A Reason for Hope. Our audiences have ranged from several overflow crowds at the Parliament of the World’s Religions in Barcelona, Spain, to hundreds of youth leaders at the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia where, through the wonders of the internet, we were connected to student gatherings in five other countries, including the Czech Republic, Mexico, and Canada.
In each instance, we have been met with extraordinarily enthusiastic responses and personal commitments to action. We truly share a reason for hope.
1) pandemic poverty where billions of people live on less than $2 a day,
2) environmentally unsustainable economic practices that threaten the very bio-systems upon which so many species depend, and
3) the ongoing threat posed by nuclear weapons.
For those of us who live in democracies, where our elected officials through their actions express our values, we must ask each candidate to answer:
Q: What are your plans to address the unacceptable divisions of wealth on the planet?
Q: What are your plans for protecting the oceans, the ozone, and biodiversity?
Q: What are your plans for ensuring nuclear weapons are never used and fulfilling the legal duty to eliminate them?
These questions represent moral challenges of our unique period in history. Practical necessity and the admonitions of the wise to treat all lives with respect compel the same conclusion. The destiny of humanity is collective or we have no destiny.
Very truly yours,
Advisor to the Jane Goodall Institute
Dr. Jane Goodall
Advisor to the Global Security Institute
P.P.S. We have been honored to author chapters in the recent publication, The Sovereignty Revolution by Alan Cranston, available through the Global Security Institute or Stanford University Press (July 2004).
“Interfaith Imperatives Post 9/11: Sovereign Value of the Golden Rule” by Jonathan Granoff, in Perspectives on 9-11, Edited by Yassin El-Ayouty, Praegr (2004).
Excerpt: “On the Casuarian Coast in the flat mangrove swampland of Indonesian New Guinea… a tribe of about 20,000 people live in harmony with the environment. They call themselves the Asmat, ‘the people—the human beings.’ Everyone else is called Manowe, ‘the edible ones.’ They are cannibals.” (more)
“Nuclear Weapons, Ethics, Morals and Law” and “Peace and Security” by Jonathan Granoff in Analyzing Moral Issues with Reasoning, Reading, Writing, and Debating in Ethics, by Judith A. Boss, MacGraw Hill (2004)
At the Parliament of the World’s Religions, Mr. Granoff, as chairman of the Advisory Committee on Security and Disarmament of the World Conference of Religions for Peace, presented a powerful moral statement on nuclear policy. http://www.wcrp.org/RforP/NEWS_Headline_5.html
Audio and video recordings are available at ConferenceRecording.com. Search their directory for recording numbers: PWR24-462, PWR24-474, and PWR24-581.
“The Sovereignty Revolution, finished shortly before his death, gives voice to his visionary understanding of how to create a world with more friends and fewer terrorists.”
—PRESIDENT BILL CLINTON
The Sovereignty Revolution is the late Senator Alan Cranston’s analysis of the problems created by our current conception of sovereignty, “with every nation supreme inside its own borders and acknowledging no master outside them.” As such, it is the last testament of a senior statesman with a deep moral commitment to nuclear disarmament.
This book is an impassioned argument that these conceptions of sovereignty, and in turn the role of international institutions, must change before humanity can effectively resolve the world’s increasingly global challenges, from international terrorism and the proliferation of nuclear weapons to climate change and poverty. Cranston argues that for humanity to survive the twenty-first century, we must adopt a more encompassing understanding of sovereignty, one that acknowledges the primacy of the individual, while emphasizing the importance of strengthening international law and increasing the authority of multilateral institutions, such as the United Nations. The book includes a foreword by Mikhail Gorbachev, an Introduction by Jonathan Schell, and response essays by Jane Goodall and Jonathan Granoff.