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“The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don’t do anything about it.” – Albert Einstein
Albert Einstein (1879 – 1955) was a German-born theoretical physicist known for his development of the general theory of relativity and his mass-energy equivalence formula E=mc2. In 1921, he received the Nobel Prize in Physics for his significant contributions to theoretical physics, particularly his discovery of the law of the photoelectric effect.
His invaluable contribution to science is not Einstein’s only access to fame. He was also known for his global and domestic activism. As a Jewish, he identified with the sufferings of African Americans and became a member of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. After the infamous and soul-shattering bombing of Hiroshima, Japan, he also became a strong advocate in imposing restriction on the usage of the a-bomb.
Despite his indirect involvement, his name was involved in the controversial Manhattan Project, a research and development project that produced the first nuclear weapons. It was said that upon learning Germany’s development of the atomic bomb, Einstein wrote to President Roosevelt with his concerns. That letter helped initiate the launching of the Manhattan Project in December 1941. It was successful enough to produce atomic bombs used in the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, to Einstein’s demise. “I do not consider myself the father of the release of atomic energy. My part in it was quite indirect,” he declared.
In an interview with Newsweek magazine, he added that, “had I known that the Germans would not succeed in developing an atomic bomb, I would have done nothing.”