Letters to the Editor

Foreign aid helps

President Trump’s budget proposals are strong on defense for the United States. He wants to build the military and make big cuts in foreign aid to keep us safer.

However, strategic foreign aid is one of America’s best investments and defenses. Only 1 percent of the U.S. budget goes for foreign aid. How can we possibly sustain a cut?

When people are healthy, educated and have economic opportunities, they are more likely to stay in their own countries, which stems the tide of immigration to the United States and creates good will toward us.

The United States has strategic programs that directly address health, education, and economic opportunity. PEPFAR, which is helping to wipe out the scourge of AIDS, and GAVI, comprehensive immunization, are just a few of the programs making people healthier.

The READ Act addresses literacy and primary education. Microlending programs bring the best business practices to some of the poorest people in the world. These are just a few of the many programs administered by USAID and hundreds of nonprofits. Well-placed foreign aid is not just good for us; it’s the right thing to do.

Ellen Kempler, Miami