Last night fear of terrorism was revived in my mind, as I watched the movie 'Face/ Off', directed by John Woo (1997). Incidentally, the movie is so anguishing I had to interrupt watching it. 9/11 is only a few days away, and the memory of the disbelief and horror, that arose in me as I saw on TV the shocking images of the planes crashing into the Twin Towers, is fresh and vivid as if it had only happened yesterday.
We live in a world of fear. Fear of terrorism, fear of kidnappings, school shootings, drugs, global warming, nuclear catastrophes, dictators threatening world peace... my goodness, I can't stand it!
But then again, was there ever a time when human beings lived not harassed by fear?
In the Middle Ages in Europe, it was fear of Satan, fear of God, of the Holy Inquisition, of bandits, of feudal lords, of the Plague.... And the existence of prehistoric people must have been even more plagued by fears, most of which we modern people would consider ridiculous.
Man (and woman) is a hunter, but also a prey, and the final motor that moves a prey is fear of being eaten. Ultimately it is fear of the unknown, that is, fear of death. We can't protect ourselves from fear. We can only learn to live with it and vanquish it.
But, can we protect ourselves from terrorism? Governments are doing their best to protect us from it. We, the normal small people, can't do much, except for maybe trying to stay alert and keep our eyes open for any suspicious things going on around us.
That's is the real world, but today in this glorious 21st century we have another reality, which is just as contaminated by dangers that terrify us: virtual reality, yes, the Internet. (I am obsessed with this, honestly!)
Take this and try not to shake too hard. I read Symantec Finland has made a research and discovered the following data: one million cyber crime cases take place daily; the cost from these crimes is 275 billion euros annually on a global level; 195 billion of this money is spent in solving problems caused by fraud; 54% of the cases are caused by viruses / malware; 11% are from online scams and phishing. Still feel like spending a few hours hooked in surfing?
Well, let's all get our anti-viruses updated and let's all rush to www.mywot.com and download Web of Trust. A close friend recommended it to me, and I can't be grateful enough. Things have changed drastically in my peace of mind ever since. There must be even more things we can do to avoid virtual dangers, so just keep me updated. And please, do not close your eyes when running around the city, you might see something alarming you should not pass by.