The casualties of 9/11 were a fraction of those killed in auto crashes that year. We do not distribute empathy according to actual harm done. We open ourselves to media and political manipulation, and the result is a grim charade. Of course, the sudden, driven action of the lone-wolf bomber is terrible. But we need to see some writing on the wall of time.

Hurt and harm

Until we begin to see the harm and hurt in terms of their actual seriousness, we will not have a mentality capable of addressing that Lone Wolf when he is three or four years old and perhaps dissuading him from growing up to emulate fellow nihilists in Paris and elsewhere.

We go from day to day anticipating yet another dramatic invitation to the narrative we are living by.

Donne and Jesus

When John Donne penned the line "No man is an island" it had about as much effect as Jesus' exhortation, "Love your enemies, bless those who curse you." It takes time for inconvenient truths to settle in. Until these do, we can argue that ethics needs to lay at the center of education not in the pile of things that are presently ignored.

The Manchester Bombing

Manchester Arena was the scene of this late night bombing. Young folk and kids were leaving a performance by Ariana Grande when a bomb exploded at the entrance and wounded 90 and killed at least 22. The story fans out and becomes part of the terror narrative.

No such narrative exists for legions who are done in by this and that. There is a general awareness that hurt and harm are evil, but we put on blinders and select those things we see as serious. Jesus and Donne saw beyond and left us reminders.

Climate change casualties

Let's say that the figures in the tweet below are inflated. Even if they were inflated by four times, you would be left with some 100K annually, now, when climate change is widely denied, dying from it. It is when we get into the multi-mega figures that we gravitate toward stories that narrow the numbers down.

Think ahead

I don't intend to have a tombstone but if I did "think ahead" would be an OK legend for it. We survive the ordeal of thinking by not thinking ahead. We do not realize that thinking is the key to progress. We do not always start by looking within and sorting out what life is about. So in addition to terrorism, we have vastly more severe causes of evil that we routinely ignore.


A most urgent imperative for this century is the achievement of a taboo on violence. A move to get that done is necessary to reduce our economically strangling reliance on militarism.