SEPT. 12, 2001
"They love explosions 'cause they never get burned."
X-tal, "Happy Americans"
Back around 1985, at the height of the Reagan years and as the Hollywood action movie began to reach new heights of pyrotechnical fabulousness, I wrote the song quoted above. At the time, I meant to make a point about how easy it is for Americans to talk casually about bombing one country or another because for generations we have been fortunate enough to have been almost completely spared from the reality of war within our own borders. Now that we are still reeling from yesterday's events, I hope that one thing we take away from this awful experience is the inability to ever again see an explosion anywhere without wondering who was in it, what their lives were like, and who they left behind. If the anonymous delusional fascists who committed these crimes accomplished anything besides damaging the Bill of Rights and the Palestinian cause beyond recognition, I hope they have given us a vivid reminder that war is something more than cool special effects and flashing blips on a video screen.
I expect that the days and weeks ahead will be filled with much talk about how "we must now stand by our President". The biggest fear in my mind now is not of more evil airplane stunts, but of what our current illegitimate Republican junta and their Democratic lap dogs may do in order to convince the public that they are "doing something". At this point, our government has virtually been handed a blank check: our forces can attack any country anywhere and claim they are retaliating. If Bush had ever shown himself to be the least bit trustworthy at any time up to now, this prospect might not be quite so disturbing. I suggest we all keep our bullshit detectors cranked up to 11 at all times. The public's desire for justice and closure could allow us to take way too much for granted. Also, I wonder what sort of "anti-terrorist", "anti-sedition" legislation is even now working its way through Congress. In a time of emergency, we could be asked to support any number of draconian measures in the name of unity and security; don't be surprised if our freedom of speech is seriously curtailed. (Don't worry though, I'm sure that only truly "dangerous" speech will be threatened, i.e. anything that dissents against our leaders' agenda, like...oh...this e-mail I'm writing?) I hope I'm just being paranoid; we'll see how things unfold. My thoughts are with those grieving right now. Go easy on one another; we're all a little edgy this week.
Illegitimati non carborundum,
-J Neo Marvin