September 11th – A Humanist Response 10 Years On

Image of WTC before the attack with US Flag in background

Today is the 10th anniversary of the worst terrorist attack on US soil. The World Trade Center in New York was attacked shortly before 9 AM on a bright and sunny Tuesday in 2001. By the end of the awful day both towers were destroyed, the Pentagon had been hit, and people were killed in a fourth plane that crashed in Pennsylvania. Five days later I wrote an essay about the attacks from my secular humanist perspective. I went through it this week and have posted it again – changed little from the day I wrote it.

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Did NY same sex marriage proponents give away the farm with religious exemptions?

The good news is that the New York state legislature finally approved a law that will allow same sex marriage. The bad news is that in order for this great thing to happen, changes in the law will allow religious sects AND the non-church businesses they operate to discriminate against gays without any legal repercussions. In the zeal to get these new rights for the LGBT community, did proponents give away the farm?

From the NY Times:

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Hugh Hewitt believes that rule of law is ‘just cliche’

It actually seems cliche when the Right supports the rule of law only for them and not for anyone else. Like how they went nuts when Mayor Bloomburg suggested terrorist not be allowed to buy guns or supporting stripping citizenship without due process based on the people you associated with. There is a problem with that thinking.

As Instaputz points out: this is a cliche authored by John Adams. But what did he know?

BTW: Did you know they’re calling Lieberman’s new citizen strip bill the TEA act? Those Tea Party protectors of the constitution must be so proud.

But they also should worry just a little bit about this, don’t you think? After an evil socialist usurper is in the White House and a communist succubus is running the State Department, which will be given the power to decide who should and shouldn’t be stripped of citizenship and sent off to FEMA camps Gitmo. Can they really be trusted not to go after the nice law abiding tea partiers?

Rule ‘O Law — Yadda, Yadda, Yadda

You know should a “domestic” terrorist (aka white person) be stripped of their citizenship, the right would go insane. That is just as cliche.

9/11 images were war pornography?

September 11th 2001 was a dark day in American history. That isn’t disputed. What is debated is how the country reacted afterward. I read a blog entry on a website today that bothered me because the writer seemed to be blurring how events turned out rather than what was known that day.

On the website Crooks and Liars, writer Susie Madrak posted an entry titled “Flashback: The Day The Earth Stood Still”.

It was a very personal account of what happened to her on September 11th 2001. I was interested in reading the essay as it matched my feelings that day until I got to the end when she wrote this:

My grown son was staying with me while he looked for a job and was sleeping on the couch when I came home. I flipped on the TV and it woke him up. We watched as they showed the planes crashing into the building, again and again and again.

“Turn it off,” he said after an hour or so. “This is pornography, war pornography. Turn it off.”

So I did.

When we have our limbic brain punched over and over again by horrific images, and those images are then used to justify more horror, there is only one solution: Turn off your TV.

My son was right: The 9/11 images were war pornography, something watched over and over as we stroked ourselves into wargasm.

Flashback: The Day The Earth Stood Still

Those words bothered me because of the way I spent my day that day. I watched the TV coverage all day and into the evening because it just didn’t seem real and I need to see the live coverage to keep driving it home that it happened.

Yes the attacks were used to justify an unneeded war in Iraq – later. On that day in September is was impossible to know how it would turn out. How could someone claim the TV images were being used to manipulate people.

That would be like saying the newsreels showing the attacks on Pearl Harbor in 1941 was used to trick us into war.

The war was started by those attacks just as they were in September 2001.

Calling the news images that day “war pornography” is either an after-the-fact colorization of the event or a cold hearted reaction to mass murder.

I hope it is the first and not the former.

September 11 revisited: an essay

In my spare time I write. I have done it for many years and it is a way for me to rant and work out issues I have in my thick skull. Most of the time I write short stories but I also like to write essays on various topics.

On September 16th, 2001, still in shock from the terrorist attacks in New York and Washington, I wrote an essay as a Humanist repsonse to the incident.

I felt that today, the 3rd anniversy of the attacks I would share that essay I wrote so soon after the event:

A big black smoking hole in one of the World Trade Center towers was the first scene I saw at 8:55 am on Tuesday September 11, 2001. Thick black smoke poured into the air. The reporters said a plane had crashed into the tower. At 9:03 am I witnessed, live on TV, a second jet come into view and plow into the other tower with a resultant explosion as thousands of pounds of fuel ignited.

“What the f***?” I remember saying while the commentators on the morning show were asking if they just saw what they just saw. They reran the video and yes it was a second jet crashing into the other tower.

For the rest go here: September 11: A Humanist Response