The Hanford Nuclear Reservation is Now The Manhattan Project National Historic Park

The Home of the Manhattan Project, The First Nuclear Reactor and, Now, a National Park

English: Unofficial emblem of the Manhattan pr...
English: Unofficial emblem of the Manhattan project, circa 1946. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I am a huge fan of our National Parks.  Being from Cleveland, I am blessed by the presence our “Emerald Necklace“. I can literally walk to 2 of our parks in less than 20 minutes.  That said, The Hanford Nuclear Reservation is a contaminated waste site and, infamously, the home of The Manhattan Project.  It has to be one of those things that make you go “hmmm”.

While the article at phys.org states that visitors will be nowhere near anything radioactive, I still have my doubts about the matter.  The article states “miles” and my mind thinks, “just how many miles please?”.  Since the site is roughly half the size of Rhod Island, it seems possible that they could keep you away from anything harmful.  After some further thought, it certainly is less frightening than Hillary Clinton saying she wants a “Manhattan Project for encryption“. All that said, however, it does not take much time to digest the fact that the location is historically significant.  It logically follows that it should be a national historic site.  After all, it was the beginning of the military-industrial complex, the Cold War, the instantaneous destruction of two Japanese cities, and massive national debt to pay for it all.  Maybe we should commemorate that? Heck, Alcatraz reports about 5000 visitors per day.  I would still want to see the reactor, do you think they will rent radiation suites for such tours?

On a more positive note but not too distant from this topic, did you know that there was actually a bill going through the paces on Capital Hill about making the Moon landing sites National Parks?  Personally, I am in favor of that idea.  While I have no idea how I could afford to get there, I would love to see the first human footprint and the location of the famous “one small step for man…”.  Unfortunately, it seems the bill died.   Hopefully, they reconsider protecting the Lunar sites before Salvage One can get there and sell the artifacts off on eBay.