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Hawaii's wake-up call: Plenty scary

A screen shot of the false missile alert that caused panic in Hawaii.
A screen shot of the false missile alert that caused panic in Hawaii. (Melinda Bush)

On Sunday, parishioners at my church heard a meaningful sermon about those 38 terrifying minutes in Hawaii. For too long, we’ve lived in a benign universe of complacency and take so much for granted. In little more than half an hour, citizens of our 50th state were shaken awake. I’d love to see studies on how thousands handled that doomsday scenario.

I’m incredulous any emergency management system has the potential of sending out missile attack warnings along with the directive, “This is not a drill.” Aren’t there overrides in place to instantaneously correct a false alarm?

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I do not consider this a “gentle” wake up call at all (“Hawaii was panicked by a false missile alert. Could that happen in Maryland?” Jan. 19). We all must understand today our life is wonderfully secure and hazard free on account of amazing technology developed in the last century. If our electrical grid failed and all electronic communication ceased, it’s hard to even contemplate the catastrophe. Hawaii’s false alarm should force everyone to recognize the fragility of our infrastructure, and for that matter, life itself.

Rosalind Heid, Baltimore

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