Sitting in a casino pool watching atomic bombs explode


Memes collide. Postcard for Benny Binion’s Horseshoe Club in Las Vegas circa 1950’s proudly features nearby open-air atomic bomb explosions. People would sit on casino roofs drinking cocktails, watching the a-bombs explode. The nice people from the government said there was no risk, no risk at all, and of course the government would never lie.

The government often waited for the winds to blow to the north before exploding the bombs so the radiation would fall, as some moral cripple in the government put it, on a “low-use segment of the population” in Utah. Victims of that fallout are called Downwinders. Some of them died. Others developed strange forms of cancer. Plenty of livestock died too. The government lied., evaded, and slimed the victims for decades. It was Dubya Bush who finally ruled that those affected deserved compensation.

No doubt some people went to Vegas to gamble and to watch the bombs detonate. Benny Binion was happy to have postcards advertising the bomb blasts and his casino. Give the people what they want.

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