FOR THE KIDS
I fought the Cold War, so my children could be teachers, and my grandchildren could explore the stars. Ironic isn’t it. Unless our nation changes course my descendants will be paying for a trillion dollar nuclear modernization, or be victims of nuclear Armageddon, or both. There is another option…
Did you ever wonder why we come out on a cold winter morning to pass out leaflets? Why we persist in calling for the abolition of nuclear weapons? The answer is the title of this leaflet…
We come out for the kids. Our kids and your kids – all the kids. Kids shouldn’t be forced to grow up in a world where their very existence is threatened by the spectre of nuclear war. Trump says our nation “must greatly strengthen and expand its nuclear capability.” We believe a new arms race is a night-mare that we must not impose on our children. We ask you to consider the possibility of a world without the threat of nuclear war – for the kids.
My name is Tom. I’m a 70 year old retired submarine officer. I’ve spent my entire life in the Cold War. As a child in the 1950’s I was very aware of Soviet nuclear weapons and our own. Those weapons scared me. Today those horrible weapons scare my grandchildren. It is a failure of our generation that you must continue to deploy the Trident weapons system.
I enlisted in the navy in the Vietnam era and served in the Submarine Force from 1967 to 1998. E-1 to E-6, O-1 to O-6, and was privileged to command an SSN. Some say the Cold War ended in 1991. For the Submarine Force it never ended and continues today. You guys deserve better.
My wife Chris may have handed you this leaflet. She has devoted her life to educating kids; over 30 years teaching kindergarten and first grade in Kitsap County. For her especially, the abolition of nuclear weapons is all about the kids.
The Ground Zero leafleters here this morning are your neighbors. Most of us are retired. Many of us have kids your age. We know that you don’t make national security policy decisions here, but you are the stewards of the hardware that threatens our very existence. We respect the difficult jobs you do, but we are saddened by the utter waste of your talent. Imagine what you might be accomplishing today if our leaders had come together a generation ago and rid the world of nuclear weapons. Imagine our kids growing up in such a world. Imagine what they might accomplish.
There aren’t enough liberals to save the world from nuclear weapons. If we are to survive in these dangerous times, people from all walks of life and political ideologies need to speak up. Nuclear weapons are evil, pure and simple. Please take responsibility – for the kids.
If you’ve read this far, thank you. Instead of putting this leaflet in the trash, perhaps you could pass it on to someone who didn’t roll down their window, or just leave it in a public place, or better yet post it on a bulletin board. For a copy, go to our website at www.gzcenter.org/leaflet.
*Tom Rogers has been a member of Ground Zero since 2004. A retired Navy Captain, he served in various capacities in the US Submarine Force from 1967 to 1998, including command of a nuclear fast attack submarine from 1988 to 1991. Since coming to Ground Zero he has provided a unique combination of operational experience with nuclear weapons and the willingness to use that expertise as a nuclear weapons abolitionist.