Thursday, April 26, 2012

#Radioactive Japan: Small Children Polish Mailboxes in High Radiation Area of Date City, #Fukushima

Horror never ends.

I posted the photo of a peach juice can from JA Date City in Fukushima the other day. The juice had 34 becquerels/kg of radioactive cesium.

Here's the photo of kindergarten children in the same Date City cleaning the mailbox in appreciation for the hard work by mailmen every day. This particular district of Date City, Ryozen-machi, is 50 kilometers from Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant. The district is dotted with known "hot spots" with elevated radiation. Many locations measured by the city exceeded 1 microsievert/hour at 1 meter off the ground, some exceeding 3 microsieverts/hour (parks) last year. Even at the end of March this year, the highest is 1.28 microsievert/hour in a park at 1 meter off the ground.

That didn't stop this particular kindergarten from going through with the routine of thanking the mailmen. I wonder if they did it last year also.

From Fukushima's local paper Fukushima Minyu (4/21/2012; link added):

園児が感謝のポスト清掃 「郵政記念日」で活動

Kindergarteners clean mailboxes to show appreciation, as activity for "Memorial Day for Postal Services"

20日の「郵政記念日」に合わせ、伊達市霊山町の神愛幼稚園(本田十和子園長)の園児たちは同日、同市の掛田郵便局と霊山総合支所のポストの清掃活動に取り組んだ。

For the "Memorial Day for Postal Services" on April 20, kindergarteners from Shin-ai Kindergarten in Ryozan-machi in Date City cleaned the mailboxes at Kakeda Post Office and Ryozen General Branch Office.

このうち、同郵便局には年長組の園児8人が訪れ、同郵便局の高木利己担当課長に「いつも手紙を届けてくれてありがとうございます」と書いた感謝状を手渡した。園児たちは雑巾を手に一生懸命にポストを磨いた後、思い思いにポストを飾り付けた。

8 kindergarteners visited Kakeda Post Office and handed the letter of appreciation to the manager of the post office that said "Thank you for delivering mail every day". The children polished the mailbox with the cleaning cloth, and decorated the mailbox.

清掃後、高木担当課長からお礼のプレゼントが贈られた。

After the cleaning, they were given presents by Manager Takagi at the postal office.

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

Are they wearing their dosimeters or is that just for school?
It's a Memorial Day for something...

Feel free to choose your own words.
Still stuck on angry and sad here.

Anonymous said...

Some of these children will survive. This message is intended for them to read later.

1. The DPJ-led government knew the dangers of low dose radiation. There was ample scientific evidence that children would be affected even more greatly than adults. But a powerful, rich nuclear industry helped create doubt and confusion. And absolute scientific proof of public health issues takes a long time. More studies would need to be completed before nobody could dismiss the dangers anymore. To many people, it seemed not a question about what the studies would prove. It seemed simply a matter of all the studies not having been completed yet.

The government chose to gamble your life with insufficient caution given the state of radiation research in 2011. Their seemed to be thinking "if it's not absolutely proven by science that danger is present, then no danger should be assumed to be present." This is never a reasonable decision when human life is at stake. It is never a decision that the government should be forcing on its citizens.

2. There were places they could have moved you. We often hear that land is scarce in Japan. It's not true. I drove from Fukuoka to Tokyo in 2012. There were huge expanses of land along the Chugoku expressway that were very sparsely populated. I drove for hours, seeing only very small towns and villages. There would have been more than enough room for all of Fukushima prefecture's people, if the government had decided to give the protection of life the same value that a normal human being would give it.


3. Your parents are not to blame. Unless they themselves were government officials, management of TEPCO, employees of advertising agencies promoting a pro-nuclear agenda, or criminals who knowingly spread radioactive waste or contaminated food & goods to other people, then your parents are probably innocent victims also. No rational parent ever wants harm to come to their children. However many were convinced enough by the DPJ-government funded propaganda about what is safe, that they were not able to judge the importance of moving you away from the most dangerous areas of Japan. Leaving would have been very hard at the time. Money was scarce in families. It would have been very difficult to find new jobs or careers. It would have been too painful to leave friends and family and community. They may also have thought it too difficult for you or your siblings emotionally to change schools, which at this time in Japan's history can be traumatic on youngsters. There were lots of good reasons to stay.

But the good reasons to LEAVE were not revealed by the DPJ-led government. Instead the government used the Japanese government's money to pay for large, expensive propaganda campaigns. They hired advertising companies to to promote the message that adequate precautions were being taken to ensure safety. These messages were much too one-sided. Many people like your parents were not told about the risks of low dose radiation. They were misled into thinking that the risks of staying where you lived were not great.

Now that you are older there are things that you can do. Please consider devoting your remaining years of life to cleaning out the government which enabled the Fukushima triple meltdown and which placed too little value on human life in its aftermath. As long as Japan remains a democracy, you have the power to change Japan and the world. Talk to people Run for public office.

You might also consider working in the non-nuclear energy industries, or in the health care field. The whole world must be convinced to abandon nuclear energy. Everyday we are at risk of nuclear meltdowns in China, because their wind blows over Japan. If they have affordable non-nuclear options, they might not build so many nuclear plants. If their people better understand the health impacts of nuclear power, perhaps they will have more power to shut down their existing nuclear plants.

ToB said...

Getting children to wipe down your hot spots. That's ... new.

robertb said...

Crime against humanity.

Anonymous said...

Look at their happy smiles as they march onward towards their inevitable doom.
"Hahaha! I'm dying! Hahaha!"

Truth is stranger than fiction, etc.

Anonymous said...

It's part of the indoctrination process. The Japanese are trained from a young age to focus heavily only on a core set of values and behaviors to the exclusion of independent thought and questioning. Sadly these children will grow up focusing on what they've been taught and not adjust to the conditions around them and in the next nuke accident they'll send their kids out to clean mailboxes (assuming they live to grow up and have healthy kids of their own ...)

W

Karen Sherry Brackett said...

So, in other words if the culture is this screwed up then someone just needs to go in and bomb the hell out of Fukushima until there are no mailboxes left to clean! Well, between the necrophilia loving Eygptians today and this news peace... I am all for it!

Chibaguy said...

@KSB, that makes no sense.

Anonymous said...

karen brackett - you are a scary person.

Anonymous said...

Karen Sherry Brackett, have you been diagnosed with schizophrenia? If you have then at least that would explain some things. If not then Jesus Christ you are more fucked up than any Japanese is.

Chibaguy said...

I think KSB needs less time on the computer at the ward. Seriously, is there anyone out there that understands this comment? Welcome to Rocky land.

Anonymous said...

KSB mental case fuck off and take your meds now..

Darth3/11 said...

KSB. Was hoping you had gotten the message and gone away. Please stop posting your nutcase comments here.

Anonymous said...

What's this about necrophilia loving Egyptians???? It's a hoax, you former nuke fuel operator dimwit!!! You are a female Homer Simpson if ever there was one.

AnotherAnonymous said...

Not "news peace", but "news piece".

Woman, get a grip on your grammar and spelling before wanting to bomb the hell out of Fukushima.

Anonymous said...

"... someone just needs to go in and bomb the hell out of Fukushima ..."

Karen, who is the voice in your head giving you this astounding suggestion? Is it your Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ?

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