That was the headline at the start of 2015. To be fair, most people with any sense of reality will have known this is pure logic. You can do some things to lessen your chances of getting some forms of cancer but in the end it is still the equivalent one of those late night roulette and poker shows.
You pays your money, you takes your choice.
We can only go so far in keeping ourselves cancer free.
Likewise we can only go so far in keeping ourselves from being dead from terrorist attacks.
In many attempts be state officialdom to ride the typical hysterical reactions to terrorist murders in the West; following the Charlie Hebdo shootings, the current boss of UK spook agency MI5 came out with many “No.Shit.Sherlock” comments.
The public are quite aware you can’t stop every terrorist attack, we also know they are trying to kill us and we are also aware they will probably never stop, killing as many as you can and there are many waiting to replace them and they will always be thinking of new ways to carry out their violence.
All this while obviously calling for more powers of surveillance.
Peter Fahy, Chief Constable of Greater Manchester Police, popped up on the BBC to talk about the arming of regular police. Granted he said it would be measured, but it plants the seeds that we the public should expect more guns on our streets, used by people who still haven’t mastered how to discharge their ‘soft’ weapons like pepper sprays and tasers in the correct manner.
We are always in danger, not from cancer and terrorists but from knee-jerking ourselves into more state control.
Our rationale lost in hysteria. Our fear of the uncontrollable leading to giving up freedoms for the illusion we will be safer.
There is a Benjamin Franklin quote – overused but none the less true.
“They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.”
It is a cliché, true though it is, to say that terrorism is a cancer that needs to be faced down and fought with as much vigour as one can muster when diagnosed with the actual disease.
But where as 1 in 3 people will likely have cancer at some point in their lives, the chances of being a victim of terrorism are far smaller.
In the fight against terror and against cancer it is worth taking a look at what legislation has been brought in to combat these threats, or what facets of our lives are now being carved open and pried into and most importantly what is being restricted, if ever so subtly.
Then ask yourselves if you actually feel any less vulnerable to either threat.