|"Only dull people are brilliant at breakfast"
|"The liberal soul shall be made fat, and he that watereth, shall be watered also himself."
-- Proverbs 11:25
"I remember in the days following 9/11, when ordinary people were showing up to help at Ground Zero, CBC News showed 4 guys in the back of a pickup truck on their way to GZ. One of them said, "Man, I'm getting tired of this . We should've gone after those s the last time."
When I heard this, I got the funny feeling that NYC (and the US) would be ok."
"When I think of Sept. 11th I think of all those lives lost, I especially think of two sisters that worked at Cantor Fitzgerald and died that day (I don't know them or their family, but something about them has always stayed with me), and I resolve to live my life to the fullest to reach out to family and friends, to enjoy life, to vote, to stay involved, to try and make the world a better place. When I gripe that I have too much work and not enough time in the day, sometimes those sisters come back to me and I tell myself no complaints, enjoy it, enjoy life."
"I remember watching the peace marches that happened only days after the 9/11 attacks. New Yorkers of all colors and ages, marching, chanting "Peace, Salaam, Shalom." I also saw the spontaneous debates and discussions that happened wherever people gather--parks, plazas, etc. They often got heated, but ended in a handshake and a deep appreciation for our Bill of Rights. Many saw a world in smoke and embers, a world burning. I saw a world healing, on the verge of breaking through to a new day, a new society, a new world community.
Then George W. Bush and the neo-cons got hold of things, and all we knew from then on was fear, fear, and more fear. The terror they sowed was rivaled only by the terror sown by the 9-11 hijackers themselves. Their culture of fear has persisted ever since, leading us to invade two foreign nations, embroil ourselves in legal/moral/ethical quandaries, and sow discord throughout the world (NOT just the Muslim world).
I still admire New Yorkers for their bravery, dignity, and courage in the face of the horrors inflicted upon them after 9-11. And I will never forgive the Bush administration from taking that away from them, and turning it into a political tool for achieving their foreign policy agenda. They turned the grief of American families into gold in their pockets, and into the grief of families in Iraq and Afghanistan. For that, they will be judged."
"It is true that New York has come back, but the post 9/11 New York is decidedly different from the pre-9/11 city it replaced. Gone is the swagger and confidence that the 1990’s economic boom instilled in us. Gone is the certainty that the city would continue as the world’s economic capitol, and in fact its primacy is now seriously challenged by London and Beijing. Gone is the belief that New York represented the best America had to offer the world. Chicago has quickly become the country’s new “Emerald City,” which might grab the Olympic prize for 2016 that New York failed to get for 2012. No, something intangible is gone. That elusive “Top of the World” belief we had in ourselves is gone. Just as the rhythm and pulse of the traffic in Times Square has been replaced by lawn chairs and benches (What next? Hammocks!), it seems that the drive and pulse of its citizens has also diminished."
"I woke up on the morning of the 12th in my sister's Upper East Side apt, since I wasn't able to get home to my apartment in Queens the day before. I took an early subway to work in midtown, and the last stop on the train was Bleecker St...none of us on the train knew what lay south of Bleecker at that moment, and were all imagining the worst. My company decided to close that day, and I went in search of a bloodbank to donate blood. I didn't know what else to do. The bloodbank said they were already overloaded with donations, and didn't need more. The city was silent, the only sound was sirens. No car traffic, no one on the sidewalk talking, no one making eye contact with each other, everyone in shock. It's the only time I've known NYC to be quiet. Later, that night, when I made it home to Astoria, there were flags flying from every house on my block, and it felt so emotional to know we were all united together."