Solidarity with Hibakusha
Guy at a platform speaking to a crowd with sign No More Hiroshimas

On the 75th anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima, we are here to stand in solidarity with Hibakusha, the survivors of the atomic bombings, and say: No more Hiroshimas, no more Nagasakis — never again!

Gensuikyo, the Japan Council against Atomic and Hydrogen Bombs, says (at “「核兵器と人類は共存できない」「生きているうちに核兵器廃絶を」―これらは被爆者のねがいです。(“‘Kakuheiki to jinrui wa kyozondekinai’ ‘Ikiteiruuchini kakuheikihaizetsuo’ — korewa hibakushano negaidesu).” Hibakusha believe that “it’s impossible for humanity to coexist with nuclear weapons.” Their hope is to “see the abolition of nuclear weapons within their lifetime.” There are still some 190,000 Hibakusha. The average age of hibakusha today is over 82. We have only a few more decades to make their wish come true.


Defund the Military, Refund Humanity

We are at a crossroads in history. On one hand, over 30 million people in the United States are unemployed. They have lost health insurance in the midst of a pandemic. Renters face evictions, homeowners are at risk of foreclosure. Yet, the “current military budget of $738 billion is … more than all federal spending on public health, education, housing, and renewable energy combined,” as the National Priorities Project says (at This combined health and economic crisis is a moment of desperation for many of us. 

On the other hand, this is also a moment of hope. Young people all over the United States have dramatically reinvigorated the Black Lives Matter movement, with a slogan of “Defund the Police, Refund the Community.” This slogan can be expanded: “Defund the Military, Refund Humanity.” When we all live in peace and prosperity, we don’t need the police to protect private property, because no one needs to take anything from anyone. When we all live in peace and prosperity, we don’t need to join the military, hoping to help pay for college or get a job with a pension and health insurance, a rare commodity these days.


Overcome the Politics of Fear

To defund the police and the military and refund the community and humanity, we need to overcome the politics of fear. The politics of fear tells us to look to family to protect us from strangers. The politics of fear tells us to look to the police to protect us from criminals, “enemies” inside. The politics of fear tells us to look to the military to protect us from foreigners, “enemies” outside. The politics of fear tells us to look to people in power to protect us from “enemies” inside or outside, visible or invisible, real or imaginary. But who protects us from the would-be “protectors”? 

“Approximately three-quarters of all homicide victims in America are killed by someone they know. And the real threat from strangers is quite different from what most fear: one-third of all Americans killed by strangers are killed by police,” according to Patrick Ball, a statistician at the Human Rights Data Analysis Group (at


More than 1,000 Americans are now dying of COVID-19 every day because of a criminally incompetent government headed by a resolutely ignorant fear-monger, who never was elected by a majority of popular vote, blaming China, Antifa, everyone else for his own failure. 

Comrades, we must get rid of Trump. Get rid of a system that made the Trump presidency possible — a system driven only by a profit motive. Get rid of capitalism and imperialism. Defund the police, defund the military, refund the community, refund humanity. Medicare for All, housing for all, education for all. Guaranteed income or jobs for all. The Green New Deal too. Nothing is impossible when we remember that “the only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”


Yoshie Furuhashi is a member of the Community Organizing Center.