The UX of Terror

These days there is alot of news about terror.  Bombs in Bagdad.  Nutballs in Virginia Tech.  9/11 and Columbine still seems fresh in my mind.  I think about how people react during these terrible moments of fear.  The students in Virginia Tech apparently froze.  They hid under the desks while the nutcase walked methodically around the room and shot people on the floor.

How would I react?  Would I freeze?  How many people would freeze?  I thought panic would be the natural reaction.  Screaming and yelling and running.  But some people do not react that way.  I’d like to think I would fight back, but who knows?  Life is not a action movie, when the hero can dodge bullets.

I remember the story of the plane on 9/11 where the passengers rushed the terrorists and wrestled them to the ground.  They saved the US Capital in all likelihood and sacrificed their lives.  I remember the people who subdued Jose Padilla (I think it was him) with his shoe bombs.

I don’t know.  It’s depressing.  It’s much easier to think about whether a person will find a menu option.  But as a humanist, I can’t help but think about all human reactions.  Sad news these days.  I hope for better days in the future. 

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