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Cherry Tree Planting Ceremony

When Aug 06, 2020
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75th ANNIVERSARY OF THE BOMBING OF HIROSHIMA AND NAGASAKI ASHEVILLE, NORTH CAROLINA AUGUST 6, 2020 

Sponsored by the Western North Carolina Chapter of Physicians for Social Responsibility 

OPENING STATEMENT OF PURPOSE Dr. Terrence Clark, Chair 

CHRONOLOGY OF THE PLANTING OF THE CHERRY TREE 

Leslie Poplawski 

LITANY OF DEDICATION Various members and friends of WNCPSR 

Please join in on the response, “Never Again.” 

Because it was on a bright sunny morning on this day, August 6, in 1945 with workers hurrying to their employment and school children innocently rushing off to school not knowing that in seconds their only remaining vestiges would be semi-permanent shadows created by the blinding flash imprinted on the sidewalks of what once was their city we say... 

Never again. 

Because it is immoral to take the lives of even one non-combatant in warfare we say... 

Because it is estimated that about 70,000 people were incinerated instantly from the atomic bomb that destroyed Hiroshima alone while approximately twice that number eventually perished from the effects of radiation we say... 

Because the United States of America is the only country ever to have used nuclear weapons to destroy life and property on such a massive scale we say... 

Because the possession of nuclear weapons by a tiny number of nations to the exclusion of others is inherently unjust and holds all peoples hostage to the threat of nuclear annihilation we say... 

Because the mere possession of nuclear weapons contains unacceptable risks of accidental explosions and terrorist theft that could trigger a nuclear holocaust we say... 

Because nuclear radiation disproportionately affects women and children we say... 

Because we seek a world that is nuclear-weapons free we say... 

Because it has been proven already that public pressure can and does move forward the essential work of reducing and eventually eliminating nuclear weapons we say.... 

Because the mayor of the City of Asheville has affirmed the work of the Western North Carolina chapter of Physicians for Social Responsibility and has encouraged all citizens to take meaningful action to decrease the risk of nuclear weapons we say... 

Because Physicians for Social Responsibility states that, “We must prevent what we can not cure” we say... 

Because there now exist programs such as Back from the Brink that promote realistic and positive steps toward policies that reduce the threat of a nuclear holocaust we say... 

Because the United Nations’ Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons is close to becoming adopted as international law and declares that, like biological and chemical weapons, the mere possession of nuclear weapons is immoral and illegal we say... 

Because the sakura or cherry tree is a symbol of hope and regeneration we dedicate this cherry tree as a living memorial to the victims of the nuclear bombs that destroyed the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and declare that it stands as a witness calling all of us to actively work for the reduction and eventual elimination of all nuclear weapons we all say emphatically.... 

Never again! 

THE RINGING OF THE BELLS 

75 for each year since the atomic bombs that destroyed Hiroshima and Nagasaki 

DISMISSAL 

 

Mission Statement

PREVENTING WHAT WE CANNOT CURE: Physicians for Social Responsibility is the medical and public health voice working to prevent the use or spread of nuclear weapons and to slow, stop and reverse global warming and the toxic degradation of the environment.