|We got inbound...38 minutes to live..|
What if you suddenly found yourself with just 38 minutes to live? Residents of Hawaii were faced with this very dire question just last week when their Emergency Broadcast System sent out an alert warning residents that a nuclear armed ballistic missile was incoming from North Korea. That this was not a drill, the message said. It was in fact, the real deal.
People who were going about their day suddenly found themselves dropping everything and taking shelter, or trying to get home to family, or just plain panicking in place. In the words of one resident who was home at the time, I didn't know of the proper protocol. I guess I had no choice but to sit there and wait for it.
So what would you do if you suddenly had just 38 minutes to live? How would you react to knowing you were about to be vaporized into oblivion? I can still recall the duck and cover drills of the early 1970s. It seemed like sci fi to me then because I was just a little boy, and I suppose it still sort of seems like that to most people now.
But we are vulnerable, our species. Never was that more apparent this week when some knucklehead working for the Emergency Broadcast System apparently, and I quote, "hit the wrong button" and sent out the message giving Hawaii only 38 minutes to exist on this planet. Imagine if Rocket Boy suddenly hits a wrong button?
The fact that we're ill-prepared to defend ourselves against a nuclear attack has become painfully apparent. The fact that when faced with just 38 minutes to live, I wouldn't know what the hell to do, is even more apparent. What's for sure is I'll keep on keeping on in the mean time.