In the months after 9/11, many travelers gave up flying to drive instead, thinking it "safer." The end result was 350 more traffic deaths, author and Hope College social psychologist David G. Myers writes on today's LAT op-ed page.
Why do we intuitively fear the wrong things? Why do smokers fret about flying? Why do we fear violent crime more than clogged arteries? Why do we fear terrorism more than accidents, which kill nearly as many in a week in just the U.S. as did worldwide terrorism in all of the 1990s? Even with the horrific scale of 9/11, more Americans in 2001 died of food poisoning than terrorism.
Elsewhere on the op-ed page, Robert Scheer's anti-Bush rant of the week also has a 9/11 theme.