Anyone who has watched television coverage of tense, painful events has seen it happen. This is especially true of news events that can, in any way, accurately be described as “disasters.” Years ago, I had a conversation with the late Peter Jennings about what happens next on camera:
Inevitably, a reporter confronts a survivor and asks: “How did you get through this terrible experience?” As often as not, a survivor replies: “I don’t know. I just prayed. Without God’s help, I don’t think I could have made it.”
What follows, explained Jennings, is an awkward silence.