The following letter to the editor was posted in today’s edition of the Sun Sentinel. It was written following a recent story in the newspaper criticizing Members of Congress for taking educational trips abroad while the economy here at home was faltering. It made no sense, which is why Evan was compelled to respond…

Travel Helps Congress See, Understand the World
Whether the economy is thriving or failing, I see absolutely no problem with members of Congress taking trips abroad, especially privately funded ones for which taxpayers don’t pay a cent. As a constituent, I sincerely want my elected representatives seeing the world firsthand beyond our borders, especially since they cast votes whose impacts are felt around the world.

And as someone who used to be involved in organizing trips to Israel for lawmakers, I know these trips are valuable. The 15-plus hours a day spent visiting strategic locations, being briefed by security experts and government officials and hearing from soldiers fighting the same threats our servicemen face in the Middle East and elsewhere make them a far cry from some sort of pampered vacation.

Not only do I wish more U.S. lawmakers would take the time to travel and gain a deeper understanding of complex issues in the world, I wish more members of the media would do the same.

Evan Nierman