Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Remembrance and Rage

I don't own a television, but I had a couple of errands to run, and I found myself eating a slice of pizza in a local joint and watching the 9/11 memorial festival on the local CBS affiliate. They were in the "S" and the friends I lost were in the "L" section (and one of them died years after the attacks from lung cancer brought on by his being engulfed in a toxic cloud for an hour or two). I pretty much wrote my piece on the aftermath of the attacks two years ago, and I don't have anything further to say about the subject.

This year, I imagine faux outrage about the Benghazi attacks will be interwoven with the 9/11 commemorations, at least among the right-wing set. We have already seen efforts to conflate the Benghazi attacks with the World Trade Center attacks and a Republican strategist claimed that the Benghazi attacks were worse than the WTC attacks- yes, a Republican actually had the nerve to claim that an attack on a remote consular post that killed four men was worse than an attack on the United States' premier city that killed approximately 3,000 individuals. When confronted with the ridiculousness of their Benghazi derangement, the conservatives respond with rage.

Conservatives always respond with rage- conservative pundits attacked the widows and the families of the fallen and various other demographic groups soon after the attacks. They ginned up violence against innocent Muslims, which spilled out into violence against non-Muslims who appeared "Muslimy" to the ignorant. Of course, the invasion of Iraq was the ultimate attack on innocent Muslims, with the WTC attacks used as an excuse.

Remembrance is appropriate. For me, reminders will come whenever I see the siblings, parent, spouse, or child of a fallen friend. It's in the absence that the loss becomes apparent- the empty seat at the table. A friend told me that his sister-in-law cries whenever she sees him because he looks so much like his dead brother. Remembrance is crucial, but rage, rage is poison. Rage just begets more violence, more rage, and that is a disservice to the people who lost their lives twelve years ago.

POSTSCRIPT: The right-wing authoritarian nut jobs just can't help themselves, they are still spouting idiocy twelve years after the attacks.


mikey said...

It's all "faux". In the sense that we actually live in the world we refuse to acknowledge.

America takes actions in the world, more than she should and with a heavy thumb on the scale. Is it surprising that somebody bloodied our nose, or is is more surprising that nobody has hit us in the guts again?

We don't get a free pass - the world is a hard, violent place, and actions have consequences. We have the technological ability to annihilate any real army in the field, so if people are going to fight us, we can reliably predict the methodology they're going to select.

But why we should expect some kind of freedom from the kinds of sudden, horrific violence we regularly visit on people around the world, and beyond that IS the norm for billions who live in war zones and struggle to keep their families and neighbors safe.

The thing that disgusts me about the 9/11 attacks is the whining. Women gathering firewood in Darfur, South African miners, farmers in eastern Congo, millions of refugees in Syria, many of them refugees from Iraq just a few years ago, bloody sectarian brutality in Afghanistan and Iraq and Pakistan and Mali and Lebanon and the list just goes on.

Americans have very little to whine about, very little to fear. So very few have smelled the stench of blood and spilled entrails and scorched flesh and disease, the sickness that comes with bad water and not enough food, the routine sight of rotting bodies by the side of the road.

FOR FUCKS SAKE, people. Your government is not innocent - the blood of the millions we've murdered is on all our hands, and to pretend to be outraged that they finally, in extremis, set out to hurt us back is obscene, and laughably disingenuous.

Sure, it's a hard world, and hard men with weapons make the rules and enforce them without mercy, but we're PART of that world, and we cannot pretend that there is some reason why we should be exempt from the very same violence we work so hard and spend so much to inflict...

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

Legacy of 9-11.


Even more.

We are so exceptional.

John Going Gently said...

Just read your previous 9/11 entry

Moving...well told

M. Bouffant said...

This was a lovely example of commercial exploitation. Fuck you, MLB.

Syrbal/Labrys said...

"Still spouting idiocy"....well, they are playing by the rule of "follow your bliss"?