Photo via: Slagheap
Threat from weapons of mass destruction, espionage, high security among the worlds airlines... what do these all have in common? They are all worldwide adopted means to protect ourselves from the possibility of terrorist attack. While new weapons and war strategy is constantly in the making, one researcher from Duke University tells us in order for mankind to survive, we need only to follow the same survival techniques nature has relied on for hundreds of millions of years.Raphael Sagarin, an assistant researcher at the Nicholas School for the Environment, reminds us that whether we are dealing with a terrorist attack or a hungry hawk, the means of survival for organisms are primarily the same. His theory revolves around the fact that nature is categorized by two groups. The predators and the prey. In order for the two to exist, they must be in constant watch of each other and be one step ahead in order to survive.
Using the same adaptive strategies nature has been using for its survival, Sagarin has taken these same rules and applied them to today's world. Here are the 5 survival tactics he believes are necessary for mankind to survive the threat of terrorist attack for the next hundred years:
The number one survival lesson from nature would have to be its ability to adapt with the constant changes in environment and its enemies. In order to survive a constantly evolving world that introduces new threats every day, the human species must be able to adapt itself to overcome these changes in as rapid pace as possible.
2. Autonomous Decentralization
If the body had to rely on a centralized unit to fight off infection or react to a dangerous stimuli (fire, predators), it would have too many battles going on at once to properly protect itself. Instead, the body must have multiple sensors connected to different autonomous, self governing units. This is what enables the octopus
to change colors as it moves across the ocean floor without having to play an active role in the changing process, its skin cells do it for them. Same thing goes for having multiple units of security in our lives, rather than just one centralized Big Brother, keeping its eye over everything at one time.
3. Accept Life is Full of Risk
Instead of spending all our efforts trying to rid every single risk that comes our way (drugs, terrorism, cancer), we should instead focus our resources on coping with them. For instance, instead of trying to rid the world of drugs, we should focus our resources on teaching new generations not to experiment with them, and developing new forms of punishment which keeps those who abuse these rules off the street indefinitely. "Like biological organisms, we need to learn how to live with risk — not declare war on general risks like terror or drugs."
4. Create Doubt in Our Enemies
Enemies may be difficult to defeat once they attack, so inhibiting their courage to attack in the first place has always been an effective means for survival in nature. Such as the bright colors of certain creatures in nature. These colors signal to their enemies that eating them might be harmful to their survival (poison). An even better example is the squirrel
who makes a very distinct noise when facing a predatory bird. They know that birds have particularly good hearing and this is their best means of displaying a sense of threat. That same squirrel when faced with a snake, waves their tail in a threatening manner, as they know it will be threatened more from sight than sound. "Contrast that to our Security Threat Level, which appears permanently, and uselessly, stuck at Orange."
Sagarin reminds us that humans have spent most of their lives facing conditions that have nothing to do with the current civilized standards of today. We can't just discount all these years of behavioral evolution, because they still very much play a part in who we are. "Trying to understand human behavior such as suicide bombing by looking only at the current world or even recorded history, is like trying to understand War and Peace by reading only the last word." It is impossible to change peoples beliefs, but if we can know where those beliefs came from we might be able to successfully convey those same beliefs to a safer means.
Source: Washington Technology
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