A group of local BMXers have caused outrage after they spent a few minutes leaping on and off the parapet at the end the West Peace Bridge.
The group of 5 or 6 youths were seen to riding up and jumping off the 2.3m arched parapet by a Chugoku Shinbun photographer from the 3rd floor of the newspaper’s office at around 5:50pm on July 10. The newspaper says that left the scene after about 5 minutes.
The parapet was designed by the late Isamu Noguchi, a world-renowned sculptor, and symbolizes the recovery from the atomic bombing. Some A-bomb survivors have descried the act as “outrageous,” and the police and the city have warned that it could have led to an accident.
The bridge was built in 1952, 7 years after the A-bombing, and designed by Isamu Noguchi, and was recently repaired. Hiroshi Harada, an 82-year-old A-bomb survivor and former director of Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum, said, “It is located at the entrance to Peace Memorial Park and is a monument that should be carefully protected by the citizens. It is outrageous.”
While we can understand the anger at this kind of behavior so close to the entrance of Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, one wonders if Noguchi he had been told so soon after the A-bombing that in 70 years the youth of Hiroshima would be using memorials as playthings, whether he would have been outraged or encouraged.
Source: Chugoku Shinbun