Saturday, September 02, 2017


I read the news today. Oh boy.
Twitter rampages and more casualties. Killer vans. Killer storms. Killer bees would be a nice bit of quiet nostalgia by comparison. As the death toll from Hurricane Harvey mounts, I wonder how long it will be until someone starts to compare terrorist attacks to the weather.
Oops. I just did it.
Okay, so now that particular die is cast, why don't we explore this bit of absurdity? These are absurd times in which we live, so we might as well prepare for it. Currently, the weapon of choice for bad guys is a truck or van, driven into a crowd. Since vans and crowds can be found on most continents and are part of the everyday fabric of our life, it's hard to imagine what could be done to limit the catastrophe. Driving into a crowd doesn't even require a license, just the ability to reach the accelerator. It fits neatly into that terror category as it takes everyday objects and turns them into something awful. Shoes. Box knives. Airplanes. Underwear. Add to that list Ford Econoline.
Meanwhile, down in Texas, where things are always bigger, the destruction wreaked by Hurricane Harvey proves once again that Mother Nature takes a back seat to no one when it comes to wreckage. The difference here is that storms can be forecast. They can be tracked by radar. While many experts claim that there was no way to predict that such a tempest would or could find its way onshore and generate the loss of life and property that has occurred, others might argue. Scientists have been talking about rising ocean levels and storm surges for years now. All that water that is dropping into our oceans that used to be part of ice shelves at our poles has to go somewhere. Houston? New Orleans? New York City?
What I' am about to suggest will be a point of discussion for many, myself included. If it is easier to keep track of our weather than the number of private and corporate vehicles available for terrorist acts, could we put a little more effort into sparing the lives of those we can? In the meantime, why not give to the Red Cross? We are past the prevention part, but we can give some relief. There's nothing absurd about that.

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