A look at the past in honour of World Peace Day.
Today is officially World Peace Day (or International Day Of Peace as it's also known) and sometimes the best way to ensure peace is to look at the mistakes of history and remind ourselves of the horrors of war.
So with that in mind, here's a short comic from the 1950s which was produced by the US government to warn citizens how to react if an atomic bomb goes off in their vicinity...
|Bert the Turtle says, "Duck and cover!"|
So now you know how to survive a nuclear bomb! Just duck ... and cover! I never realised it was that easy! "Phewf! I just managed to duck out of the way of that nuclear explosion! That was a close one!"
The image above is an edited summary of the full comic, so if you want to check out the full version you can find it at the following link:
Government Comics: Bert The Turtle Says 'Duck And Cover'
On a similar theme there was also a short educational film produced which warned citizens of the same message. You can watch the film below:
I don't know if it's just me, but the cheery tune at the start of the video just seems a bit out of place in an educational video warning people about the dangers of an atomic bomb. "La, la, la! If an atomic bomb goes off, this is what to do. La, la, la! Isn't that great?"
Also, I was quite surprised to see someone sticking his head under a newspaper and the narrator commenting that, '...even a newspaper can save you from a bad burn.' Hmm... So just to get this straight, if an atomic bomb goes off, stick your head under a newspaper to stop yourself from getting burnt?!? I have to admit, I'm not entirely convinced.
Anyway, I don't want to sound like a full-on hippie, but it's definitely better to laugh and be happy than to fight. So getting back to the important purpose of today, here's a serious quote from the UN Secretary General regarding World Peace Day:
"On this International Day of Peace, let us pledge to teach our children the value of tolerance and mutual respect. Let us invest in the schools and teachers that will build a fair and inclusive world that embraces diversity. Let us fight for peace and defend it with all our might."
...UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon
You can find out more about World Peace Day at the following link:
World Peace Day
Footnote: Just as a closing comment, in all seriousness in certain circumstances 'duck and cover' is actually wise advice. If you were at the epicentre of an atomic explosion (or any massive explosion) then obviously ducking and covering would be of little use, but further away from the explosion it can save you from death or serious injury.
For example during the Chelyabinsk meteor explosion of 2013 a wise teacher immediately told her class of students to take cover under their desks and not a single pupil suffered a cut. However, because the teacher bravely and selflessly remained standing up to check that the students were following her advice, she unfortunately suffered serious lacerations herself.
The natural human reaction when you see a bright flash is to think, 'Ee, what was that?' and to then look in the direction of the flash, but the safest thing to do, like Bert The Turtle says, is to duck ... and cover! Despite this though, I still have my doubts about the effectiveness of a newspaper as protection against an atomic bomb...