Nuclear weapons in Chicago and the law

In 1986, Chicago added Chapter 1-16 to Title 1 of its municipal code, making Chicago a nuclear weapons free zone. This change took place around the same time the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty between the United States and the Soviet Union was first proposed.

Chapter 1-16 specifically forbids anyone in the City of Chicago from designing, producing, deploying, launching, maintaining or storing a nuclear weapon. It also says the city will “not participate in any civil defense or population evacuation program exclusively intended to be implemented upon the outbreak or threatened outbreak of nuclear hostilities.” The rationale being that these programs are “futile and dangerous.”

Just for fun, here’s the infamous Civil Defense program known as “Duck and Cover,” shown to every American student in the 1950s.

Considering how dangerous those above activities are, the punishment for engaging in them is relatively light, 30 days in prison and a $1,000 fine. Violent crimes have stricter punishments in the criminal code.

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