By Martha Quillen
What happens when catastrophe strikes and emotions are running so high that words are inadequate? People often gather at memorial services or disaster sites to express their sorrow. They light candles, leave tokens, say prayers, sing, cry and comfort one another. And for awhile, they feel as if they are one people, mourning together.
But that seldom lasts. Before long, citizens start clamoring for their government to do something. But they almost never agree on what. Investigate more people? Make arrests? Deploy the army? Detain dissidents and immigrants? Fortify the borders? Outlaw Islam? Exile foreigners? Torture someone?