Thursday, February 21, 2013

Nuclear shelter chief passes, interesting issues associated with his job

“I hate to hear people say that they would prefer to die in a nuclear attack rather than face the horrors of survival,” Steuart Pittman U.P.I. in 1961. “This nation was built by people who left Europe to face the unknown hazards of a wilderness continent. Do we no longer have the courage to face an unknown challenge?”

The New York Times today
has a fascinating story about the former head of the organization charged in the early 1960s with developing a national system of nuclear attack shelters.

Moat fascinating question -- Is is legitimate to use violence when a neighbor is trying to get into your shelter?

Here is the Times:
Steuart Pittman, a Washington lawyer who was appointed by President John F. Kennedy in 1961 to create enough fallout shelters to protect every American in the event of a nuclear attack, and who resigned in frustration three years later amid heated debates over the feasibility, the cost and even the ethics of such a program, died on Feb. 10 at his family farm in Davidsonville, Md. He was 93. The apparent cause was a stroke, said his wife, Barbara.

And a discussion of some of the issues:
There were also ethical debates about whether it would be justified to use violence to stop a neighbor from forcing his way into someone’s shelter. Peace activists warned that building too many fallout shelters would hurt the cause of disarmament.

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