Geoffrey Long
Tip of the Quill: Archives
Fine, I'll be the asshole.

Somebody has to say it, and as near as I can tell nobody is, so I guess I'll be That Guy.

If you lost loved ones on September 11th, you have my most heartfelt condolences. All of us were damaged on September 11th, but your lives were the only ones whose were changed irreversibly. Any rememberances or memorials you want to observe, please do. You have all my respect and sympathy. That goes for all of you who have lost loved ones in the subsequent wars in Afghanistan and Iraq as well.

As for the rest of us... It's time to get on with our lives. We are never going to heal if we don't stop picking at this wound, and we're still allowing ourselves to be played like dimestore harmonicas by an administration who has a very vested interest in keeping this pain fresh and in our minds.

It's been two years. Yes, 9/11 was worse than the Challenger explosion. Yes, 9/11 was only moderately lower on the catastrophic scale than, say, Pearl Harbor. But unless we're doing something that's going to finally catch the bastards responsible, all this "never forget" stuff equals "never heal" and "never live again".

While it's true that we may never have lived in the safe world that we thought we had pre-9/11, and that there is value in having been exposed to The Real World that the rest of the world has to live with every day, if that's what you're going for, read a goddamned newspaper on any given morning. Liberia. Israel. Russia. Iraq. Afghanistan. Every day people are dying. Sometimes we're the ones doing the killing. Getting yourselves all dolled up and preening about how your country has been so horribly, horribly wronged is downright shameful.

And as for you, Mr. Rumsfeld, Mr. Cheney, Mr. Ashcroft, and Mr. Bush – by continually pulling this "if you're not with us you're with the terrorists" bullshit on the American people, you're proving youselves more dangerous to us than all the terrorists on the planet combined. Get the fuck out of our White House.

And that's all I have to say about that.


Along those same lines, there’s an article in today’s Post (page A12 in the print edition) you may find of interest — noting how Bush basically screams “9/11!” whenever he can't actually address (or, most likely, understand) a legitimate question.

I remember my feelings of horror and fear watching September 11th unfold. And this winter as were in the middle of "shocking and awe-ing" Baghdad, I couldn't help but think that the Iraqis were experiencing their own September 11th, only moreso. And having gone through all this ourselves less than two years ago, how the hell could Bush & Company POSSIBLY think that the Iraqis wouldn't react to us with the same anger that we felt on 9/11? It reeks of total arrogance or total ineptitude and in either case that's downright inexcusable.

I'm with you, dude. But people heal at their own rate and in their own ways. Give 'em time.

Personally, I'm afraid it's gonna be a while before those buildings are not the first thing my mind sees when someone says "September 11." That's just the way my brain is set up.

I wish it could be any other way. Today, especially.

And may the Lord have mercy upon us, amen.

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