Monday, March 12, 2012

Fukushima Remembered in San Clemente

The government sent radioactive milk
for their children to drink.
This weekend we stood united in truth with our brothers and sisters from Japan. A year ago the entire world watched in horror as Fukushima experienced a devastating earthquake & tsunami. A seaside village, a surfing town, with a nuclear plant, not unlike our San Clemente.

A Geiger counter inside the San Clemente
Community Center reads 0.025.
Saturday night visitors from Japan spoke to our town, gathered at the San Clemente Community Center. We heard their fears for their children's health. The quest to discover the truth, uncovering the lies of the nuclear industry and a conspiring government. The government sent them radioactive milk for their children to drink. Allowed them to play on playgrounds with unconscionable amounts of radioactivity. Shamed parents trying to protect their children, telling them they were solely seeking fame. The pain, the panic, the unanswered questions still remain.

Parents in desperate search for the truth. Helpless to protect their children from the unseen, tasteless, odorless. deadly byproducts of a profit hungry industry

Our Japanese guests tell us how grateful they are to eat food they don't fear is contaminated. They express concern for our safety sharing with us an alarming radiation reading they found at our TStreet. A gieger counter inside the community center reads 0.025. We join with them at the end of the presentation to walk silently up Del Mar Avenue each of us holding a candle in solidarity.

They flip us off as we walk alongside
the mothers of Fukushima.
"But where will we get our power?" an ugly angry face screams from a bar. They flip us off as we walk alongside the mothers of Fukushima. A group of young men scream out "we love our nuclear waste." For the first time in my life I am ashamed of San Clemente.

"Mother Teresa never joined a protest," my friend gently guides me, "she never wanted to be against anything." "We are powerful united in love." I know she is trying to soothe my agitation, anger and fear. And while her friendship comforts me, as a new mom with a 15 month old baby growing up near this power plant I remain unconvinced. Kate was 3 months to the day of this disaster and I have carefully tracked the radioactive plumes. I noticed when web sites stopped showing the information. As an avid watcher of international news the media blackout was very apparent to me.

Police forces drawn from three counties line the road to San Onofre.
The next day we all gather at the San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant. I choose to leave my baby at home. My sister-in-law drives our compressed natural gas car to drop us off. We pass multiple clusters of police cars. Police forces drawn from San Diego County, Orange County and even Los Angeles County line the road to a clearing in a field where people are singing songs.

We listen to the speakers Ace Hoffman,
Gary Headrick, Torgen Johnson,
Cori Schumacher and others.
We listen to the speakers. Ace Hoffman, a brilliant man and published author who has dedicated his life to uncovering the lies of the nuclear industry.

Gary Headrick a local San Clemente resident who initially started San Clemente Green to bring awareness to green issues but was contacted multiple times by whistle blowers at the plant. Workers scared of retaliation if their safety complaints were made.

Torgen Johnson, a Harvard educated architect and urban planner, having lived in the Caribbean he has experienced the phenomenon know as "tequila sunrise" sands traveling thousands of miles in the atmosphere. He knew those Fukushima plumes were arriving on US and Canadian soil and affect us to this day.

Surfer Cori Schumacher, in the ocean everyday can attest that we are all indeed connected by that big ocean. As she put it surfers are "canaries in the coal mine" when it comes to ocean pollutants.

Turn off a light for Fukushima. 
I tuck my baby into bed. I dream of new answers. I walk through the house and turn off every extraneous light. "Turn off a light for Fukushima" I say under my breath. I dream of a day the solar panels at the San Onofre power plant will grow from just the lights in the parking lot to the whole hillside. A day when the lies are out in the sunshine and the fears put to rest. A day when our power source is renewables and this deadly dinosaur has been put to sleep forever.