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The Ratio

  1. 1

    100.0%
  2. 2

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  3. 3

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  4. 5

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  5. 10

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  6. 50

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  7. 100

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  8. 1000000

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. Jul 7, 2005 #1
    Many people seem to view lives lost to terrorism as far more important than lives lost to causes such as obesity and cancer. This poll is to determine out in the open how many deaths by obesity or cancer are enough to equal one death by other causes. The question:

    How many deaths to cancer, heart disease, stroke, Alzheimer's, accidents, pneumonia, etc. does it take to be worth as much as one death to terrorism?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 7, 2005 #2
    dude, give it up.
     
  4. Jul 7, 2005 #3
    That was not a constructive comment. I think there might actually be some people who would vote more than 1, based on arguments they have presented.
     
  5. Jul 7, 2005 #4

    Monique

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    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    You forgot the fractions of 1. Now you cannot participate in your own poll.
     
  6. Jul 7, 2005 #5
    If what you're trying to measure is to what degree the public should be concerned with these different ways of dying then I say the one death by a terrorist is worth infinity more lives then death by natural causes...natural causes are sad but they are nothing like people being killed from terrorist attacks or murders etc.

    If I smoke and I acquire cancer because of it, that is my own fault but if a drunk driver kills me it is their fault. While some people might be sad that I died, they can only really blame me for my irresponsible behavior. When a drunk driver kills me, however, the blame goes to the drunk driver and as such is much more deserving of public attention.
     
  7. Jul 7, 2005 #6

    Evo

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    Staff: Mentor

    People are understandably more affected when random deaths are caused by acts of terrorism because it is frightening. This does not make the deaths any more important.

    It is understandable that people are concerned about terrorism, it affects all of us in some way.

    Admittedly, people went too far overboard in raising money and holding "celebrity telethons" and the like after 9/11. They did make the mistake of putting more importance on the death of the victims of the terrorist strikes and it was wrong. The families of the victims of that event were not more entitled to benefits than anyone else. My friend Susan lost her sister, her brother in law and her 3 nieces/nephews on 9/11 when a drunk driver crossed the median and killed all 5 of them. No celebrities sang for money for her family, no tv station interviewed her and put her story on tv, no one set up financial funds for her. Most people only lost one person in the 9/11 event, she lost her entire family.

    That still does not make it right for anyone to try to minimize the deaths and injuries today. It is tragic when any innocent person dies as the result of the evil others are capable of.
     
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2005
  8. Jul 7, 2005 #7

    Monique

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    Gold Member

    BicycleTree is forgetting the news value of such deaths. People die in car accidents everday, only in a local environment will this hold news value. London does not get bombed everyday, these are thus high-profile deaths.

    If a high ranking political figure were to have an heart attack, would we simply ignore it and say people have heart attacks all the time?

    It is true that we should place things into perspective, there are bombings taking place in other countries and there is not such an overwhelming compassion as I see here.. apparently it hits home harder since we regarded London as a safe place to be and that faith has been damaged.
     
  9. Jul 7, 2005 #8
    Dear Bicycle tree,

    When we buried our first child as a baby, I went through incredible mental contortions for months, to try to make mathematical sense of it. It drove me crazy, and I never figured out a mathematical value for what her life was worth. I knew that to me, I was at my breaking point for a very long time. And I knew that for others, they didn't understand why it hurt me as badly as it did. Their subjective number for her death was not the same as my own. Some of them didn't even see her death as a tragedy. They're entitled to that.

    What I realised, was that the pain that such an event causes, does not have a number attached to it in the way that you are trying to measure. But that doesn't mean you shouldn't go through the process. Every tragedy is a tragedy, and only you know how you respond to these things - and whether any particular event is even a tragedy as far as you are concerned.

    I suggest that you can come to a greater understanding of the depths of your own humanity (and anyone else's, too) by wrestling with these numbers as you are - but also by understanding that you aren't, ultimately, going to come up with a number. It just doesn't work that way.

    I'm sorry that there is pain in the world, Bicycle Tree. (And I'm sorry that you probably find this contribution totally mushy and without merit. :) )
     
  10. Jul 7, 2005 #9
    That's a good point. Bombs daily in Iraq, eh?

    My personal focus has been on the ramifications of this event. It makes me very nervous.
     
  11. Jul 7, 2005 #10
    Assume that those dying from terrorism or from other causes are otherwise indistinguishable--no "high ranking political figures."

    Also, please reply to the other Ratio poll, since it is better-constructed.
     
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