or the other, who died?
--In a Cemetary, Steinn Steinnarr
Although it looks like a tomato,
it's kind of a notional tomato.
I mean, it's the idea of a tomato
--Food, Inc., (2008)
Remember Pear Harbor
-- Keep America Alert!
Remember the Alamo!
Remember the Maine!
--U.S. Fighting Mottoes
"We'll Never Forget" is such a feel-good, quasi-tough motto -- but it's more accurate to say, we will never understand.
Remember 9-11 has gained mythic status in the U.S. popular mind because it is facile, like popping a top on a Coke Zero (and just as nutritious). Realism is not an easy sell in a country that likes dirty, pretty things without complication.
The events of that day were criminal, and 3,000 +/- people were killed; but they died in discrete events. Being a nation with a couple of hundred years of experience and a codex of laws, we know how to deal with such hits. What we are unwilling to confront are the ongoing killing blows our society absorbs every day, attacks which are largely preventable.
- 200,000+ die from sepsis in the U.S. annually
- ~300,000 die from obesity-related illness
- ~100,000 Americans die annually from medical malpractice
- ~25,000 die from gunshot wounds
- ~25,000 are killed on the roads at the hands of drunk drivers rampaging the roads
- ~400,000 die from tobacco-related illness
- Diabetes is rampant, yet we continue to mainline soda, ice cream, high fructose corn sweetener (HFCS) and tons pastel yellow, blue and pink packets of chemical sweeteners, their innocuous, sweet colors belying the fact that they compromise our insulin response. (Of course, we have drugs for the ruination, keeping Big Pharma in the pink)
- Our drinking water is contaminated, our food dusted with fungicides, insecticides, herbicides, pesticides and other carcinogens
- We have cell phones attached to our heads which may or may not cause cancer, but certainly disrupt the brain's chemical signaling.
- About 1,700 children die from abuse and neglect annually; ~1,200 women die as a result of domestic violence. (The FBI estimates a woman is beaten every 15 seconds in the US.)
Terror is not the threat we fear. The threat is smiling at us appealingly from our marketer's shelves.
Lest we forget.