Monday, March 11, 2013

Yeah, I Guess Zombies Would Constitute a Sudden Crisis

No talk of crises in today's blog. Let's look at a more cheery topic -- death.

Zombie Banner

"'We are more interested in the zombie at times when as a culture we feel disempowered,' (Clemson University Professor Sarah) Lauro said. 'And the facts are there that, when we are experiencing economic crises, the vast population is feeling disempowered. ... Either playing dead themselves ... or watching a show like 'Walking Dead' provides a great variety of outlets for people.'

"But, Lauro pointed out, the display of dissatisfaction isn't always a conscious expression of that feeling of frustration.
'If you were to ask the participants, I don't think that all of them are very cognizant of what they're saying when they put on the zombie makeup and participate,' she said. 'To me, it's such an obvious allegory. We feel like, in one way, we're dead.'"  ( My wife and daughter have participated in zombie walks. You wouldn't catch me dead in one. As of last year, Lauro said, zombie walks had been documented in 20 countries. The largest one drew more than 4,000 participants at the New Jersey Zombie Walk in Asbury Park in 2010, according to Guinness World Records. "The zombie mob originated in 2003 in Toronto, Lauro said, and popularity escalated dramatically in the United States in 2005, alongside a rise in dissatisfaction with the war in Iraq. 'It was a way that the population was getting to exercise the fact that they felt like they hadn't been listened to by the Bush administration,' Lauro said. 'Nobody really wanted that war, and yet we were going to war anyway.'"

All right, I've heard of Republicans being accused of all kinds of things, but never zombiism.

In the popular TV series The Walking Dead, humans struggle to escape from a pack of zombies hungry for flesh. Prank alerts have warned of a zombie apocalypse on radio stations in a handful of states. And across the country, zombie wannabes in tattered clothes occasionally fill local parks, gurgling moans of the undead. Even the Centers for Disease Control has gotten with the program.

"Wonder why Zombies, Zombie Apocalypse, and Zombie Preparedness continue to live or walk dead on a CDC web site? As it turns out what first began as a tongue in cheek campaign to engage new audiences with preparedness messages has proven to be a very effective platform. We continue to reach and engage a wide variety of audiences on all hazards preparedness via Zombie Preparedness; and as our own director, Dr. Ali Khan notes, 'If you are generally well equipped to deal with a zombie apocalypse you will be prepared for a hurricane, pandemic, earthquake, or terrorist attack.' So please log on, get a kit, make a plan, and be prepared!" (

Okay, one plug for crisis communications planning: Prepare for the worst and hope for the best.

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