Despite attrition, the neighborhood is regarded as a survivor. New houses stand among the historic, old ones, and the character, though always changing, remains. But residents are well aware that staying on top of the Hill carries risk and requires vigilance, whether it be from eminent domain, corrupt developers, or sudden, natural or man-made disaster. […]
Despite attrition, the neighborhood is regarded as a survivor. New houses stand among the historic, old ones, and the character, though always changing, remains. But residents are well aware that staying on top of the Hill carries risk and requires vigilance, whether it be from eminent domain, corrupt developers, or sudden, natural or man-made disaster.
Immediately following the terrorist attack of 9/11, some residents asked what would happen if downtown Richmond, or to put it more precisely, the Richmond Federal Reserve, experienced a ‘dirty bomb’. Would neighbors be forced from their homes “for their own safety”? What are the evacuation routes? How well is the government, at all levels, prepared? As the conversation went on, the concept of preparedness took on other aspects and scenarios. Pandemic flu? Refugees from an event in D.C. and Norfolk? Fortunately, Ben Johnson with the City’s Emergency Services had just come on board and was asking some of the same questions. I can’t say everything is in place or that Richmond is fully ready, but at least the conversation has started.
The point of this post is bring attention to Citizens to Stop Nuclear Terror, a group that started around the same time and, fittingly, in the same place. In 2005 an article appeared in the Times Dispatch, “Group organizes in Richmond to help stop nuclear terrorism”, by Dena Sloan.
Minimizing the threat of nuclear terrorism might seem beyond the reach of a group of Richmonders gathered in an Oregon Hill living room.
But members of the newly formed Richmond Citizens To Stop Nuclear Terrorism believe that encouraging policymakers to better protect domestic and international nuclear weapons and material is an issue that everyday people should embrace.
The nonprofit organization officially came into existence Sunday night as about a dozen people gathered in the Oregon Hill home of one of the new group’s members.
About 40 individuals, including a number of members of the World Affairs Council of Greater Richmond, have signed on with the organization.
Plans are in the works to create a network of similar grass-roots groups around Virginia and across the country, said Edmund A. Rennolds III, the organization’s founder, who has been interested in nuclear-arms control for a number of years.
Through newspaper commentaries and letters to the editor, and by hosting speakers and other public events, members will seek to raise public awareness about steps the U.S. can take to prevent rogue groups from gaining access to nuclear materials.
The group also hopes to encourage individuals to contact elected officials about putting in place better safeguards to protect nuclear substances.
Today, that group is rapidly moving forward and is gathering more attention. Its important to recognize that it’s not a partisan organization, and takes no stands on the wars. Its not about fearmongering, its about making sure that this very real danger is addressed NOW at the current level.
As Americans watch the Presidential debates, keep this question in mind: What will you do to stop nuclear terrorism?