Duck and cover . . .
It’s no secret that the year 2020 has worn out its welcome. Everyone is weary of one climate, weather, political and health issue after another. We’re becoming numb to bad news. I’m reminded of how those living in the 1950s may have felt hearing about the atomic bomb. They say that the unknown is always the scariest as our minds tend to worry about what we can’t foresee. Cue the locusts. Back then schools across the United States were training students to dive under their desks and cover their heads in what were called duck and cover drills to protect themselves in the event of an atomic attack. This was in response to the Soviet Union detonating its first nuclear device on August 29, 1949 in Kazakhstan. This event bolstered a panic over an intensifying arms race and an alarming chapter in the Cold War.
In an effort to ease the minds of children during these drills, The Federal Civil Defense Administration (FCDA) hired a New York ad agency to create a film that could be shown in schools to educate children about how to protect themselves during an atomic attack. The film was called Duck and Cover and contained images of students and adults practicing the safety techniques in a school in Queens, New York. Despite the kid-friendly message, the drills did frighten children.
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