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Editor of the Reformer:

John McClaughry's recent commentary ("Four very serious but widely ignored threats," May 9) was so misguided and outrageous it's really hard to know where to begin a response.

He spent the initial part of his commentary mocking or diminishing the importance of a living wage for workers, the violation of migrants' human rights, the spread of Islamophobia, climate change and Native American rights. All of these issues are realities that are and will directly harm countless millions of people. He argues that these matters should be of little concern.

According to McClaughry, the real threats faced by the United States and the rest of the world are the national debt, potential asteroid strikes and electromagnetic pulse events. Of course, his concern about the national debt is focused on programs that help people living in poverty (Medicaid), the elderly (Social Security and Medicare) and people with disabilities (disability insurance), rather than the trillions spent on endless wars and corporate military expenditures. His warnings about asteroid strikes is particularly pernicious and is akin to feudal barons and clergy promising peasants that their suffering in this life would be repaid with rapture in the next.

Henry Zacchini,

Dummerston, May 10