A Question of Why

At one level of thinking and reacting, people wish beyond all reason to give labels and motivations to the actions of others. Obviously, part of the reason our species survived at all can be attributed to our ability to look at situations, and using our experiences, make predictions about what is likely to happen next.

But humans are complex and very imperfect critters.

Eventually there will be an action taken by someone, and we will be unable to assign any rational justification as a cause for the behavior.

Terrorist acts are such situations. To murder, torture, rape, and destroy because someone has a different worldview than you do?

Certainly doesn’t seem rational to me!

When politicians and media talking heads give explanations for these actions, anyone who takes a moment will see the obvious disconnect. Whether they blame economics, global warming, racial privilege, or whatever, there is a disconnect in that a thinking human being will not take these actions.

I do not really care what particular violence we are looking at; rape, mugging, home invasion, bullying, spousal abuse, and on and on. Conflict has many levels. But we waste our time in asking the question of “why?” during the event.

If we really want to run ourselves crazy after the event, we can pursue these questions regarding the motivation of the bad guy.

But during the event?

No freaking way.

In my previous article on the Terrorist Threat I gave some advice on what to do in the event you find yourself in the worst place at the wrong time.

In typical modern PC fashion, I was sent a ton of email (not literally). I was taken to task over not giving advice on what to do if the terrorists used bombs (just survive first, then be of some help if you manage to accomplish that task). There were those asking why my imaginary terrorist was shouting in arabic. But what really got to me were the people trying to explain to me why they murder innocent people.

Here is the real problem, if you are there when it happens, it does not matter why they are doing what they are doing. They are trying to kill you.

Same with the other threats listed here. Telling a mugger that you feel bad about his economic status which has brought him to such a life stage where he must rob you will not change his mind about robbing you. When drunk man is punching you in the face, excusing his actions based on understanding that he is inebriated is not going to put your teeth back in your head.

The relevant information is going to be found in what is actually happening. For obvious reasons, I cannot list every possible bit of information here, so I will fall back on advising you to put away your electronic distractions and pay attention to what is going on around you.

When the bad guy shows up, why is not relevant. He is there, and must be handled accordingly. Anything less is only offering your throat to the wolf.

One Comment

  1. Les says:

    I wouldn’t try to rehabilitate a criminal by beating him on a daily basis and I wouldn’t try to counsel a man who was kicking in the door to my house


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