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Cogelow: Vulnerability and the human condition

Ere firing in all directions, responding to the latest security scares, we might reflect upon the wisdom of previous reactions. Take 9/11, a horrible tragedy, but given our country's massive scale, it was really little more than a scratch. Rather...

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Ere firing in all directions, responding to the latest security scares, we might reflect upon the wisdom of previous reactions.

Take 9/11, a horrible tragedy, but given our country's massive scale, it was really little more than a scratch. Rather than characterize it as minimally damaging to the nation-the work of infantile, "religious" lunatics-and primarily a crime against civilization and humanity, our leaders transformed their outrageous and not extraordinarily difficult act into a tremendously victorious first strike upon our nation.

Exemplifying cultural insensitivity, President George H. Bush then recruited for them by calling for "a crusade against the axis of evil." Next, rather than focus on the perpetrators, Bush went after Iraq in accordance with neo-con schemes hatched prior to his election, with consequences yet unfolding.

When the primary damage from "terrorist" events is psychological, and a main goal notoriety, why do we demand that our press and media exponentially enhance their returns? Whether they be kids shooting up classrooms or jihadists blowing up trains, we transform their "15 minutes" of infamy into immortality, inspiring other losers to imitation. (Why not simply anonymously identify each by a seven-digit case number, and portray each in caricature as a diaper-clad infant throwing a tantrum?)

Rather than further interfaith antagonism, we could diminish politico-religious nuts of all stripes were we to examine our own fine "Christian" whackos, from KKK locals to Jim Jones and Tim McVeigh. Muslim youth might be more perceptive of the nuttiness of their zealots were the similarity to our own made clear.

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Those who believe that it would be necessary and good to soon have the world go up in smoke, accepting such as part of God's "end-time" plans to bring all the righteous to eternal glory, would do well to vote for Trump with his vows to shoot from both lip and hip.

Those who recognize that vulnerability is inextricably part of civilized existence, and who deem that facts, analysis and strategic intervention and response present the best course towards enhancing safety and preserving this earth and its civilizations, will do well to get out and vote for Hillary.

Fred Cogelow

Willmar

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