Victor W. Sidel and Robert C. Wesley, Jr.



Violence as a Public Health Problem: Lessons for Action Against Violence by Health Care Professionals from the Work of the International Physicians Movement for the Prevention of Nuclear War

The public health effects posed by the persistence of a global commitment to weapons and violence in conducting international relations–militarism–are presented by Victor W. Sidel and Robert Wesley Jr. By forcefully splintering the worldwide social fabric and directly and indirectly forestalling the achievement of universal social and economic well-being militarism is dually destructive of the “public” and “health.” The authors vividly demonstrate the legacy of militarism’s deleterious effects on global health in all of its dimensions–the direct killing and maiming resulting from weapons use the environmental havoc caused by production and detonation of weapons of mass destruction including landmines and the social and economic dislocations and disparities in the wake of warfare and drained budgets that in turn fuel new cycles of violence. Drs. Sidel and Wesley link such patterns of global violence to the experience of U.S. communities consumed by gun violence and devastated by draconian budget cuts.

violence; public health; doctors; medical profession; social problems; health care, politics of; nuclear weapons; physicians for social responsibility

Citation: Social Justice Vol. 22, No. 4 (1995): 154-170


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