The two terrorists drove in a gasoline-powered vehicle and used bullets from guns to try and cause death and destruction at a cartoon event in Texas. Old fashioned technologies used by two weaponized fanatics, associated with ISIS it now seems. They did not come descending from space with EMP weapons or fire a nuclear weapon from the upper stratosphere that discharged an electromagnetic pulse which took down America’s grid. But according to Peter Pry, executive director of the EMP Task Force, a bipartisan congressional task force, if the federal government doesn’t pony up 2 billion, America’s grid is completely vulnerable to an EMP attack. And should this theoretical, a terrifying one admittedly, become reality, death and starvation on a scale never seen before is nigh at hand. According to Pry at least.

Did the Soviet Union successfully develop EMP weapons? Do they actually work? Whether the ones developed by whatever branch of the military here, or in some abandoned, collapsing ex-soviet arms center? If one thinks of the untold billions spent by the military on say the stealth bomber, and whether those funds could have been better spent, it behooves a little caution. R&D on weapons and defense systems in general is not just a fact of life; it’s the leading edge of the next generation of civilian technologies. And whole industries, new and fading, depend on that. But a certain amount of oversight, and readily available information to the media and the public, is also necessary.

In other words, how scared should residents of Garland be of an EMP attack from space? By who is never quite clarified and one hopes the military does not start recommending civilians start brushing up on old X-files episodes. Nothing better than silly to dismantle a spending campaign. The people of Garland one suspects, are far more interested in who those two terrorists were. Where they lived in. How long they have been in America, or if they were actually born somewhere in the U.S. And what connections they may have had with ISIS. And who else might be part of their crazed little circle. The residents of Garland also know how to stay safe, how to work with police, and how to use the liberties that they have to ensure a strong and free community. If there is any remote danger of an EMP attack, a reasoned discourse with voters, like those in Garland, seems a good place to start.

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