Letter to the Editor

By Corbin Cavallero

Letter to the Editor:The black and yellow signs have again invaded our campus. Before we get caught up in their “saving power,” let a few facts be known. Most of this information was obtained during an interview with Mr. Manning (a Mac grad) of the St. Paul Civil Defense Office and can be found in a report presented to MCSG last spring.

1. These are fallout shelters – not bomb shelters – and offer no special blast damage protection.

2. For the shelter to offer full protection a bomb can not be dropped in this area. (State Capitol, Twin City Airport, Mpls. Navy Base, Mpls. Honeywell…)

3. “Food” and water is provided for a period of 2 weeks on a strict ration basis for a set number of people.

4. Because of this, the actual bombing can last a total of two or three days maximum. This leads to at least two weeks of fallout danger. (If more than the stated number of people are admitted to the shelter, the bombing time is cut.)

The Civil Defense recommends that each shelter have an assigned “shelter manager” who has been trained by the Civil Defense and therefore knows the equipment available and how it is to be used.

I feel these buildings will be on campus whether the signs are up or not. (This assumption for Kirk and Olin-Rice can be questioned.) Food and water as well as medical supplies have been provided, but in an extremely limited sense. I spent one whole morning trying to find out where these supplies are stored. Even when these supplies are found, they would not last through an attack on the U.S. You can only hide for two weeks, and this time is cut down if more people force their way into the shelter. What happens when you are forced out of the shelter after these two weeks? No one knows how the food is to be distribiuted, which people are to be admitted, or what they are going to do when they get there. No one has even been put in charge of the shelter or taken training in their operation or in the theory behind them (if you can stand to think of the theory behind them). I actually am one of the few people who knows where the supplies are kept in the various buildings. (They aren’t in the shelter area.)

That’s not the whole story – I hope you’ll be hearing more. The fallout shelters MAY have some value, but decide what that value is and act accordingly. I suggest you bet your life on something a little more positive. Don’t give in to the disease and try to hide in some building but try to get at its source and eliminate the need for treatment. Lets not be lulled into a false sense of security. Those black and yellow signs just don’t point to salvation.

Corbin Cavallero ’11 can be reached at [email protected]calester.edu.