Alcohol and drug addiction have been problems that have long plagued American society. It wrecks families and can drag honest men and women of integrity into lives of theft, lies, and illness in the pursuit of the next high. Recovery can be long and difficult, but not impossible. As the alcohol debate reached its height in the late 1800s, one woman proposed a more direct approach, one that made her a legend. Carrie Nation, the small woman armed with a hatchet, became a nightmare for bar patrons across the country.
Whenever elected officials agree in unison on an issue, I want to pause and wonder. It’s either a really good thing for the people or really good for the politicians. To say it’s good for both equally is contrary to the laws of physics, just following the “science.”
As you all know, the general election is coming up in a few weeks. In this crazy year, it’s important to cast your vote. It’s the way we, the American people, can have an impact. Politicians work for us, not the other way around.
CalCo Museum has Civil Defense Equipment on display that belongs to the county, only moved from one storage location to another. The county received the equipment, now artifacts under the 1950’s and 60’s Civilian Defense Program. Three items were chosen for display. One, a CDV-717 Survey Meter reads high radiation levels (1-5 r/hr) and has a removable bottom with cable and monitoring element that can be placed 25 ft outside a structure. This was designed for post nuclear attack to monitor high gamma radiation levels. The second item is a CDV-750 Dosimeter Pen that reads total cumulative radiation exposure and its charger. When charged, the pen resets to zero. We were taught in the military that in a nuclear scenario to continue your duties after reaching fatal dosage (1,000 rad) until fi nally succumbing to the radiation. Ain’t nothing fun about nuclear war; it is dead serious. The third item is a CDV-700 “Geiger Counter’’ that reads low level beta and gamma radiation. It will read the small amounts of uranium in watches. These radiological monitoring equipment are all circa 1964. I well remember the October 1962 Cuban missile crisis that brought the US and Soviet Union to the brink of nuclear war. I recall thinking it wasn’t fair that I might never get to go swimming again. Those were tense times. That event led to greater awareness of the prospect of nuclear war and the emphasis on civil defense. In the late 1960’s I worked at Brown-Root (now Highland Resources) in the WWII/ Korean War ammo bunkers. Many of the “igloos’’ had been designated as Civil Defense sites and still had stocks of water, hard candy, and sanitary items. The U.S. government discontinued the Civil Defense program in 2006 and the CD logo is no longer used (Wikipedia). The principal function was absorbed into the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
Each morning, the Stars and Stripes and the Arkansas flag are proudly raised as symbols of the land. The Arkansas flag, however, is the product of one determined and creative school teacher, Willie Hocker. Hocker’s story is one of how even ordinary people can have a powerful impact on history.