Images of disaster compel attention as if they were the real deal

Calgary flooded, June 21 2013. Photo by Wilson Hui, flickr.

We can’t help ourselves, it seems. Every time disaster strikes, we humans feel compelled to watch. Once. Twice. Again. And again. And again.

It’s as if by looping through the experience vicariously, we’re trying to imprint on our brains the images we find horrifying.

Yet weirdly and somewhat twistedly, we’re mesmerized by those images, too.

I’m speaking, of course, of last week’s pictures from Alberta and southeastern B.C.: of houses swept under bridges, towns and cities sitting deep in water, cats and their people swimming across raging rivers that were once roadways.

Continue reading this editorial at the Victoria Times Colonist


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