Why terrorism won’t stop our family from traveling
The recent terrorist attack in Nice, France brought quite a bit of unrest to our family and friends who are concerned with our choice to travel abroad despite recent terrorism in Europe; especially because we have chosen a city in France as one of our major travel destinations . WHY on earth would we travel NOW when times are so turbulent abroad?!?
Let me first say, I completely understand the reservation and anxiety that is expressed to us from our loved ones. If I was in their shoes I would absolutely express similar sentiments. I’m also not downplaying the tragedies that have befallen our neighbors domestically and abroad; they are all real and horrifying. Our continued thoughts of sympathy go out to the victims and their families for their unimaginable losses.
Even with that being said — terrorism won’t stop our family from traveling and here is why:
The statistics are in our favor — from 2005-2015 71 Americans died abroad as a result of terrorism; compare those statistics to the 301,797 Americans who were killed by gun violence domestically in the same time period and you can see where the threat truly lies.
To make our case even stronger, mass shootings killing four or more people in the United States have taken place in almost 100 metro cities within the last 12 months alone. Even with the statistics above, I’m still more likely to die as a result of drowning in my bathtub (1 in 800,000) than die as a result of terrorism (1 in 20 million). That, to me is reassuring.
I’m aware of other REAL risks — the sun is more of a risk factor than terror, yet so many of us skip the sunscreen, get burned and years later down the road run the risk of skin cancer despite warnings, research and experiences from friends and family members — Wendy Perrin writes an amazing article about why to travel despite terrorism worries, citing that the real danger lies in activities like avoiding sunscreen use that can potentially result in skin cancer (1 in 5 adults will develop skin cancer in their lifetime) or motor vehicle accidents where the American is the one driving.
Above all else, the world is worth exploring — danger lurks around every corner, yes. Groups like ISIS are real and true dangers, also yes.; but if we are avoiding travel because we are scared of the unknown, aren’t we playing into the game those who wish to harm us want us to? The world is a BIG, beautiful place full of possibilities and wonder, and I’m a firm believer there is MORE good than evil across the board, across the world. It’s a place worthy of exploration and I hope that taking my children to see the world will open all of our minds and hearts to cultures unlike ours. I hope we make friends with people we have nothing in common with only to see how similar we truly are deep down. At the end of the day
I don’t want to live my life in constant fear, and that constant fear won’t keep me prisoner inside my home. I’m also a mother and the safety of my children is the most important priority in any given situation, whether its crossing the street or boarding a plane. We have planned and planned and planned some more. We have logged our travel details with STEP, purchased travelers insurance and have educated ourselves on what is going on in the world around us.
Don’t let terrorism stop you from traveling. We certainly aren’t.
Six more days until Germany!