I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones
-Albert Einstein (contemplating nuclear devastation)

Thursday, March 17, 2011

A Day of Great Hope


Greetings from The Zone - the Puget Sound Nuclear Weapon Free Zone. Earlier today three co-conspirators signed a document establishing Puget Sound as a Nuclear Weapon Free Zone. I first travelled to the Tacoma Catholic Worker where we held an informal signing ceremony. Bix Bichsel, SJ was removing a load of laundry from the dryer as I placed the original Puget Sound Nuclear Weapon Free Zone Declaration on the kitchen table and put my signature on it.  Bix placed his laundry on the table, picked up the pen and added his signature.

Later in the day I met with my other co-conspirator, Tom Shea, who also signed the document.  With all three of our signatures the Declaration is now official (as far as we are concerned).  Acting as informed and responsible citizens we have established the Puget Sound Nuclear Weapon Free Zone.  The rest, as the saying goes, will one day be history.  We hope that what we have started will continue to grow and engage more and more fellow citizens in the struggle to abolish nuclear weapons, starting right here at home.

As I write this, just 20 miles from Seattle - as the gull flies - is the largest concentration of operational nuclear weapons (according to the Kansas City Star).  These are weapons which, by their very nature and design would, if ever used, kill tens of thousands, or possibly millions of people and contaminate vast areas of land, making them unlivable.  And that is NOT the worst case scenario - more on that another time.

Getting back to The Zone - While at the Tacoma Catholic Worker today, Theresa Power-Drutis dropped in to Jean's House of Prayer - where Bix lives - with a box of yard signs.  I owe Theresa a particular debt of gratitude; had it not been for her this project might never have gotten off the ground.  She contacted me about a month ago and told me she was going to have an initial run of Puget Sound Nuclear Weapon Free Zone yard signs printed, and she needed a Website that she could put on the sign (She Just Did It!).

I knew at that moment that there was nowhere to hide; it was time to act. No more talking and planning; it was time to get off the dime.  Today we have a Website/Blog and a Declaration.  We take an initial step as we establish the Declaration, and we hope that it will build on the footsteps of those who have gone before us, and ultimately become a well trodden path toward a nuclear weapon free world.  I invite you to take the first step (of many) with us and endorse the Declaration.

Go to the "Declaration" page, read the declaration, and if it resonates for you please add your name (or organization) to what I hope will become a very long list.

Today is a day of great hope as we begin a new phase in our work.  Our hope is that the Puget Sound Nuclear Weapon Free Zone will generate increased public action toward a world free of nuclear weapons; and that action starts right here in Puget Sound.  Join us!



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