Study the past before choosing future

The opera Dr. Atomic, recently shown on public TV and at local theaters as performed by the Metropolitan Opera, reminded me of the founding of the Atomic Age.

It started at Los Alamos, N.M., as a top-secret government project, under the leadership of J. Robert Oppenheimer. The people of the United States were not aware of the choices the scientists involved in this project had faced, or of the struggle with their consciences. The scientists knew the world would not be the same after the first atomic-bomb test, and the welfare of the human race would be affected. Even today, many people are not aware of how that event has changed the world.

On April 6, the World Affairs Council will have a program on the consequences of this event. The meeting will be co-sponsored by Western North Carolina Physicians for Social Responsibility and the Asheville-Buncombe League of Women Voters, and it will take place at 7 p.m. in Owen Hall, third floor, at UNCA. It is open to the public at no fee.

With a new federal administration, it seems appropriate to question as well the concept of war. Thus the program will begin with the 20-minute video Beyond War, followed by brief discussion. Then the main presentation will be Nuclear Weapons and the Human Future, a 30-minute video with audience participation to ensue. Discussion will be moderated, with members of WNCPSR assisting as resource persons.

— Leah Karpen

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