The media likes to paint the scary picture that terrorists are potentially lurking behind every corner, and that we are at an increased risk of falling victim to a terrorist attack every single day. Fortunately, the threat of terrorism is wildly exaggerated on the media front. You should no more fear any terrorist attack than you should fear your car or a bathtub. Especially if you are a senior citizen, you are more likely to fall down the stairs and die than you are to be targeted by any radical extremist. Granted, over the last couple of years with the rise of ISIS overseas there has been an increase in fatalities due to terrorism. Still, the terrorists have a long way to go before they overtake bumblebees, cars, and bathtubs.
According to a report by the Institute for Economics and Peace, nearly 18,000 people died from terrorist attacks in 2013, more than 6,000 of them were from Iraq alone. It is clear that the number of fatalities is increasing, thanks to the spread of ISIS, as this rate holds a 60% increase over the deaths of the year before. However, “terrorism” still does not pose enough of a threat to warrant the fear that many hold, and to justify the amount of effort and money that gets poured into this never-ending vendetta. It has been over a decade now, billions of dollars spent, and thousands of lives lost, yet we are still told that we should fear terror more now than ever before. Not only does the approach to “terror” not seem to be working, but taking into account statistical evidence, it isn't even justified.
It is true that people lose their lives in terrorist attacks, but the reality of the threat comes nowhere close to warranting the amount of energy and resources that has already been allocated to this ghost-chase. For the number of individuals worldwide who have been killed by a terrorist attack, the majority of victims in those cases come from foreign countries such as Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Syria, and Nigeria. The second round of likely locations where you would be targeted for attacks would be in India, Somalia, Yemen, Thailand, or the Philippines. Furthermore, when it comes to the likelihood of Western civilians being targeted in an attack, the chances of likelihood plummet.
According to the 2011 National Counter Terrorism Center (NCTC) report, Americans are more likely to be killed from a myriad of random objects and activities, before they should ever have to worry about being targeted and killed in a terrorist attack. To put it in perspective, more people are crushed to death by their televisions or furniture each year, than they are targeted or harmed by any terrorist. The police in your own city pose more of a threat to your liberty than any terrorist ever would. According to 2011 data, the chances of you being attacked by a terrorist are roughly 1 in 20 million. Compared to the likelihood of you drowning in a bathtub (1 in 800,000), losing your life in a car crash (1 in 19,000), dying in a building fire (1 in 99,000), or being struck by lightning (1 in 5,500,000). We should honestly be more concerned about heart disease, strokes, or cancer, before we should worry about any terrorist threat. It should also be noted that terrorist incidents have only increased in prevalence since the inception of the war on terror back in 2001. Clearly, the ongoing warfare is only contributing to more of the same problem and that warfare isn't justified when we should more rightly be afraid of things like tornadoes, earthquakes, floods, dog bites, excessive heat, and bicycle accidents. Despite the reality that terror does not pose any imminent threat to most citizens, world leaders (like Harper) are determined anyway to strip away our civil liberties in the effort to steadily go after "terror," and they continue with this even though there is no clear idea in mind of what a victory would even look like. The war on terror has demonstrated that the war isn't just about terrorism.
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