|April Fast Sample Letter to the Editor|
What are they?
Letters to the editor (LTE's) most often discuss a recent event or issue covered by a publication, radio station, or TV program. Widely read, LTE's are your chance to "sound-off" to your community about issues in the news.
Elements / Hints
[Intro sentence connecting your letter to a recent article, if applicable]. On April 4-10, I will join thousands around the country in public fasts to call for the closure of the controversial School of the Americas, renamed the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation (SOA/ WHINSEC). Graduates of this U.S.-taxpayer-financed institution continue to be implicated in civilian-targeted killings throughout Latin America.
The SOA/ WHINSEC, a training facility for Latin American security personnel located at Fort Benning, Georgia, made headlines in 1996 when the Pentagon released training manuals used at the school that advocated torture, extortion and execution. Despite this shocking admission and hundreds of documented human rights abuses connected to soldiers trained at the school, no independent investigation into the training facility has ever taken place.
For hundreds of thousands of Latin Americans, this school is a symbol of torture and failed U.S foreign policy. It is out of line with the values of everyday Americans, and closing it for good would send a strong human rights record to Latin America and the world.
A nationwide movement of human rights groups, religious clergy and laypeople, students, veterans, unionists and many others will take part in these public fasts, including a contingent from [your town]. We will fast at [location] on [date] to raise awareness of the SOA/WHINSEC and demand that our representatives in Congress vote to shut down this training camp. The SOA/WHINSEC narrowly averted closure in 2007 when a bill to cut funding to the school lost in Congress by a margin of 6 votes. The path to lasting peace and security can only be found if we implement a foreign policy that reflects our ideals of justice and democracy.
To learn more about the SOA/WHINSEC and efforts to close it, visit www.SOAW.org or call 202-234-3440.
[your name, address and contact info]
5525 Illinois Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20011