Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Eleven years since 911

Each of us, the citizens of the United States alive and aware on September 11, 2001, has his own intimacy with that day.  I know I do.

An early morning phone call.  That is how the day began.  I was still abed.  Awake, but abed.  It was a reckless time in life.  Mahatma Candy daze.

The call was my roommate's mother.  Calling from Texas to speak to her son.  "They've flown a plane into the Trade Towers!" 

I flicked on the tube and watched while I got dressed for work.  Two horrific smudge towers, belching Void-black smoke.  My first thought:  "My God!  There are people in there!"  Then, realizing this was not a bizarre chance event but an act of savagery, this brain-freezer:  "The people who did this really hate us."

At work, people watched the television in the weight room.  'Twas a day of Fate.  I watched for a bit. 

Human memory is a malleable substance; we do the best we can with Truth.  But I believe even as I watched the towers burn, I knew what to expect from my people --the people of the United States --and I dreaded it.

Strike up the band and people will dance.  Not all, but many.  There are always dancers, waiting for someone to call the tune.

Not me.  I won't dance.

I'll sing, though.

Eleven years have delivered fear to reality.  Eleven years of war.  Eleven years of jingo-hooliganism.  Eleven years of Islamophobia.

I wonder:  what did bin Laden hope to achieve?

Nothing good has come of 911.  There is no silver lining to it. 

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