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Posted: Nov. 17, 2002
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Question of the Week: 76 - 9/8/2002
America 911: One Year Later. What's Changed? Are we Safer?
September 11th, 2001 set in motion various changes in the way that people view the world. From personal tragedies to governmental policies to global military actions, many stories have emerged from that one fateful day. Has YOUR life changed since 9/11/01? How has the world changed? Are you feeling more or less secure these days? Do you think that 9/11 is too much the focus for current events/ policies or are we really living in a different world today? Will the 'war on terror' ever be over? Will you do something to commemorate this day or do you just wish that all of the hype would go away?
You can review the original posts from last year's 9/11 Perspectives at: Responses to 9/11
| Reponses: There are 103 responses posted to this question.
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| Thoughts On 9/11 ||Sep 15th. at 1:49:09 am EDT|
|Bob (Lawrenceville, GA) ||Age: 46 - Email |
Like most, I was horrified and shocked when I watched the events unfolding on the tv that day. I was in class and someone ran in to tell us about a plane hitting the WTC. At first, like everyone else, I thought it was simply a tragic accident. But when that same person ran in to tell us a second plane had hit the other tower, we all ran to the nearest tv set in a nearby conference room and sat amazed for what seemed like eternity as news came in about the Pentagon and the plane crash in Pennsylvania. Suddenly it was like a dark veil had fallen across everything and all the stories of World War III felt like they were coming true. I called in to my office to see what was going on because I work at the Centers for Disease Control which many feared was a target. I got no answer and figured they had evacuated. So I went home and stayed glued to the TV for what seemed like days.
That was then.
Now, I feel that the whole event, tragic as it was for everyone and especially for those who never saw their loved ones again...has been milked to death by the media. Like voracious wolves, the news media plays the images and the stories over and over and over. And all the specials and commemorative ads and talk shows and documentaries...
Then you have all the memorial services and memorial tributes and commemorative memorabilia and dedications and testimonials and remembrances...
It's almost as if we'll be living in this dark cloud of tragedy forever. And the government plays on our fears of a repeat attack so every other day there's a new alert, another suspected terrorist plot uncovered, another arrest, another bit of secret information comes to light about new possible threats, the hunt for Bin Laden...on and on...
I'm surprised half the nation isn't clinically depressed and paranoid by now.
I think we're entering a very dark time period where anything and everything that isn't 110% All American and Christian is going to be scrutinized and suspect. If there is another major attack on this country, I think we're going to see a police state and people rounded up and put in camps like they did the Japanese. Troops patrolling the streets, curfews, innocent people arrested and/or killed...Maybe Orwell was right...just a few years off the mark.
| Dealing With Pain Through Poetry ||Sep 14th. at 12:23:17 pm EDT|
|emmie (net name) (Tennessee) ||Age: 19 - Email |
I wrote these poems on September 11th 2001 while the pain and grief was still fresh in my heart and still aching my soul. I hope these poems can be appreciated as befour when I posted them elsewhere I was ridiculed.
Peace (poem) 9/11/2001
Sadness and tragedy are hear in our hearts we have fear. America has been struck a fierce blow. When will the heartache end when shall the suffering no longer be here. I sit and stare at the pieces as they fall burning to the ground. My tears fall as the rumbling of the buildings shake. Death is hear tragedy fear, loss of love loss of life, pray this soon ends peace please come on wings of doves, fast and graceful in flight. Peace please come to my homeland America for she may not be perfect but she needs you now, enough suffering for one day peace please come heal our hearts, mend our souls, dry our tears, peace please come we need you near.
In Memory of all the family's, all the victim's and to all Americans. We must never forget the lesson taught to us this day. A lesson learned from tears, heartache and grief.
Lady Liberty (poem) 9/11/2001
Lady Liberty still stands tall, smoke may billow and buildings will fall but may her torch shine on, never ending lasting strong. We built this country on sweat, blood, and tears, please people of this great nation release your fears. Allow Lady Liberty to light the way torch shining brightly each and everyday. Night falls and her beauty shines on our country is hurting but we must be strong. Remember tonight in your prayers, pray for this to be the end of heartache and terror, when you awake tomorrow let it be a new day, no more heartache, no more fear, let Lady Liberty be your guide, she will stand tall and guide you to the truth, she has never let us down. Let her torch guide you, her grace be your strenght.
| A Lonely Soujorn Into Blue Collar (Male) Culture ||Sep 14th. at 10:28:47 am EDT|
|Phoenix (Jersey City, NJ) ||Age: 37 - Email |
I work construction in NYC and had gone done to do rescue work with my crew a year ago and have been watching their responses since. I have gained the respect and trust of many of the other trades as well and being a compassionate woman helps.
Much of it is still very, very angry and aggresive. The Union (of course) took our pending participation in the ceremonies at Ground Zero Wednesday as an indicator as to how patriotic we are.
Oh, so ever reactionary.
There was resistance to such an imposition as there always is, amoung the wild streak of this population, but the pressure was greater than usual.
People are frightened. Even amoung my very evolved friends (off-site) there is a terror. A willingness to forgo civil liberties and impose upon others through racial profiling.
Being at a Village park on 9/11 later, the comments draw in chalk seemed primarily of love and healing and resistance to war. But this has always been an exceptional place. It saddens and worries me to see what the Mass Media spews out in general but at least the debates have included a more diverse view. I am grateful that the challenge still exists and has not been submerged.
Feelings aside, the LAWS being generated terrify me. A choke hold is being set into place on the people of this Nation and all who come in contact with it.
We have never had an invading force upon this land since this countries inseption and our immature responses are showing.
Death is part of Life. Our lack of TRUST in the Universe is all too clear.
I wish BLESSINGS upon us all and a way to find serenity. I guess it has been long in coming. The numbness has been shattered on many levels and it may need to get worse before it can get better. How much worse depends on all of us. I pray we all continue are self-healing and let it spread. After the crisis last year I stumbled to the first available place for counseling to help process my experience.
I felt much joy to the response to my question of "How many people who have never sought out therapy before?" Most of them that have stepped through these doors, was the response. Stepping through this kind of door I believe will bring about change.
Many such places still offer free (and not free) assistance advertised often. I think I'll go back and speak to same man again and pose the same question.
Beginning in our own center, our communities the work continues. This gives me hope.
| I'm Tired Of It ||Sep 14th. at 7:50:51 am EDT|
|Baal (North Carolina) ||Age: 36 - Email |
first off "we" was never safe to begin with.
we Americans lived in a pretend world...America the powerful..
yet everyone is running around like chicken little..."the terrorist is coming.."
I even see the news of the 3 guys in Georgia....come on guys..
why would terrorist say their plan in english??????
I know how they felt..many times I get tired of people watching me thinking I may do
something..and in small towns it's bad.
these people panic real quick and people such as myself...are tired.
do not put your faith in Dubya...he's accomplished nothing.
but at the same time people need to calm down.
chances are..your death would be of no value to a terrorist.
they are not going to hit the little towns.
and Miami...are you kidding?
they could hit that anytime if they really wanted...most of us,I'm from Miami...
look like them...they can blend in real good.
and living in a small town and having these people always look at me
has me so fed up that many time I wish to say things or wear a bin ladin shirt
just for shock value to play on their ignorance.
| All Wars Are Holy Wars ||Sep 14th. at 12:15:33 am EDT|
|Scarlett MacGregor (Louisville) ||Age: 35 - Email |
...if only to those who start them. We, as a country, are perhaps more vigilant now--less naive, less certain of our inviolability as a nation. The enemy is within as well as without, and that enemy is not an ethnicity but a mindset, existing not only in the distant reaches of a desert land but in the very halls of our nation's government, in our streets, our workplaces, our homes. It began with a remorseless attack led by those who believed God was on their side. That is how it will continue, too.
I feel no safer. Until that day comes that government and religion truly are divided, until that day comes that fundamentalist ideologies are no longer tolerated in places of power, I will not feel safe. It will get worse before it gets better. Be vigilant, and be strong. Terrorists are not the only threat to freedom.
| My Thought Can Only Be Expressed Threw Poem ||Sep 13th. at 11:10:39 pm EDT|
|Scott Dlouhy (Regina, Sask Canada) ||Age: 15 - Email |
Through The Eyes Of A Terrorist
I’m like a fly in a beehive. I have no right to be alive. I should give up living for people are unforgiving. To stop forgiving is to be forgotten. Soon my soul will become decayed and rotten. Then I alone will become the lonely scum that walks the under earth, waiting for my rebirth for a second chance to enhance my life and to give up the Reepers scythe. To live, give, and breathe again. Love will fill my mind. I will once again embrace mankind, To leave my past behind. To weave and cast a spell to demolish all hell, give life to dead and stop all blood shed. I am but a man but I can do all these things and take flight with angel's wings if I put down my gun and let the war against terrorism be done.
By: Scott Dlouhy
Please email me with your thoughts/questions on this poem.
I am very eager to hear from you.
| What I See In A New Light After 911 ||Sep 13th. at 8:42:02 pm EDT|
|pam (Baytown, Texas) ||Age: 23 - Email |
911 has changed me in a sense that I am now more aware of politics and military procedures. I am more in touch with reality and most American's really were not. We have lived in a cushy stable enviroment to where, if someone would have said a couple of years ago that we would be attacked we would have laughed at them. Now we have been violated, and the fear is there still. I am also sad to say that I think alot of people went back to being as was before. We should NOT take our lifestyles and liberties for granted. We should appreicate everything we have (non-material things especially) I still don't think that alot of American's do even after 911. Now if you were to say that one day these luxuries would be all taken away and that we would become less powerful and this country would hit rock bottom, would we laugh at that statement? My point is don't ever take anything for granted, appreciate EVERYTHING you have. My first statement as I watched the Twin Towers attack on the news was simply "things will never be the same" and they won't.
LOVE TO ALL!
| Thorts With You ||Sep 13th. at 5:51:13 pm EDT|
|paul flowers (UK, london) ||Age: 28 - Email |
from your frends in the UK we will stand with you, in the figh agenst evil.
No it will never end as the has to be a balence and as long as we stand for good in the world there will always going to be evil fighting agenst us.
and theres just human natcher witch will always put one vew agenced another. i dont know but all we can do is stand together...
A frend from England
| My Thoughts..... ||Sep 13th. at 5:40:06 pm EDT|
|Urytevaera (Canada) ||Age: 21 - Email - Web|
I live up in Western Canada and though I am on the opposite end of the land September 11th still affected me.
I remember where I was that day (as most do), I was actually dreaming when the first plane hit.
My dream at the time showed an image of a wall, similar in style to the designs of the white house.
In the dream a bullet hit the wall and it slid down(exactly as the towers did) and a hole was left in the center of the 'new wall' where the old one was. I peered into the hole and I could just 'feel' that it could go on forever and ever....
I didn't really think about the symbolism of my dream until this september 11th 2002. I now see that we are making that hole deeper. All our hatred, all our fears are pouring in there....forever and ever(amen) :*(
Since September 11th 2001, I have begun to take more interest in the world around me. I know I can't change what is going on 'over there' but I CAN make a difference over here.
I have tried more and more little things to help others now. I can't say I am a saint, because I definately would not fit that title...but I realize that the world isn't revolving around me...its revolving around us, for us, and we have to learn to spin with the world and dance with it.
I may not know what is going to happen tomorrow, and if a bomb did go off, I wouldn't be suprised...but that does not mean I am going to give up on this place.
Things DO happen for a reason, yes, and me seeing the event (though by tv) has changed my life forever and for the better.
| 9-11 Was A Double Tragedy ||Sep 13th. at 4:00:34 pm EDT|
|Aedh Rua (New Richmond, WI) ||Age: 36 - Email |
A year later, and it seems to me that for Pagans, Heathens, and all non-Christian Americans, 9-11 was a double attack. We were attacked as a nation by fundies from without. Then, we were betrayed by fundies from within.
When the attack came, I felt rage against those responsible. I was ready to join with the Christians in a war against Al-Qaeda. At the same time, I felt fear. Could this the pretext for the foundation of a totalitarian state in America? Still, it seemed right to give the government its chance, the benefit of a doubt.
Well, in the year since, we have had the comments by Falwell, Robertson, and others. We have had the ten commandments going up everywhere. We have had an upswing in harassment against Pagans. We have had the restriction of our freedom in ways which have very little to do with getting the bad guys. And, in case no one else has noticed, the bad guys remain at large, conveniently around to serve as enemies.
Pagan Americans were attacked just like other Americans. Then we were stabbed in the back.
| My Thoughts ||Sep 13th. at 1:00:05 pm EDT|
|Joyel Lofton (Indiana) ||Age: 27 - Email |
If I could light a candle each and every person that died I would.
I will always wonder what is going to happen next. As the news put it
they will never be able to stop all terrist attacks. No they can't
It can happen at anytime but you can't live your life wondering when
it will happen again. If I had a spell to make it all better I would.
| World War III? ||Sep 13th. at 11:43:06 am EDT|
|MearaBebhinn (south central PA) ||Age: 24 - Email |
Yes, lots of things have changed since last year. After a year to ponder the current world events (as well as my own views on life in general), and to hear/read/see the memorials and stories of various people, i was coming to the conclusion that 9/11 would have sparked an awareness. It has, in good and bad ways. People have found out about the issues at home in Afghanistan and other Middle Eastern countries and seen starving babies and beaten women, and have wanted to help. We became brothers with Afghani men who have been trying to get terrorists out of their country for decades. Chrisitan Pres. Bush worshipped in a Mosque to show Americans we need solidarity and it was only one group of extremists, not all Arabs and Muslims who hate freedom. On the other hand, i have seen that some people are aware that there are other people out there who are different than they are and have spawned their own hate. Now that we might go to war against Iraq, guess what the first thing out of Saddam's mouth will be? "Those Americans hate us Muslims! Off to jihad!" Okay, so once we've done away with the Middle Eastern terrorists, are we going after the IRA? The same things have been going on in Northern Ireland that have been going on in Israel and we have ignored that. And it's all wars over religions! It's a shame they won't end until people stop teaching their children to hate. That is all they know from day one. I fear the Pres. will be assassinated. There was already one attempt. When will we end this stupid "us vs. them" mentality?! I was so sad when i learned it was an Arabic group that was responsible for the recent attacks, not just 9/11 but the Yemen ship and African embassy bombings. As a belly dancer, i have actually taken a cultural interest in the countries whose dances i am trying to learn. I have studied mostly North African history. It is a shame that the natives, the Berbers, were overtaken and converted by Muslims and Christians coming from outside their countries. When will the conversion wars end? Not that Osama and his lemmings cared whether there were Muslims in the Trade Center. Dictatorial brainwashing has been going on not only in the Middle East but elsewhere in the world for centuries. Muslims, Christians, and Jews all worship the same God and read the same holy texts. As a Wiccan i want to see peace and tolerance, but i'm afraid it won't happen any time soon.
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