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The Small Voice of Reason

September 12th, 2001 - 4:12 a.m.

I'm Currently Avoiding:

Stupid graphic nightmares with odd visuals that wake me up. Sometimes dreaming in film and technicolor just isn't a good thing. It wasn't a dream about what happened today though, although it would be completely understandable if it had been. I don't know where it came from, I just want some of those final images out of my head. And then I'd like to go back to bed. Yes, I rhymed, sorry.

Although, I'm alive to *be* dreaming, so I guess I should be thankful for that. Even though nothing remotely frightening happened in Philadelphia today, it was all elsewhere. I realize that everyone else on Diaryland, all 250,000 of them, or at least those who can, plus or minus the ones that don't reside in this country, is writing about this. I don't care if you've heard it all before. The point is, they're all diaries and diaries are supposed to be used to write about stuff which upsets you. I think it might even be in the definition. And something like what happened today upsets Everybody, thus, there will be at least one entry about it.

Appropriately enough, yesterday...

September 11 is ... No News Is Good News Day (I wish there wouldn't have been any news, it would've been vastly preferrable to the news there actually was.)

I'm not going to put up any words or songs of the day, none really seem appropriate. (Just on the off chance that you were looking for them.)

Today was odd. They cancelled classes, I just didn't realize that they had done that, so I went to my only class anyway. No one was there of course. I hadn't realized that the attack was severe enough to merit closing school for *us*. Usually the only thing that can get this university to cancel its classes is if the weather makes it physically impossible for either the teachers or the students to go to class. I think I only remember this happening twice in three years. Once due to extremely heavy rains, the other due to snow which turned to ice on the roads, making it dangerous for too many teachers to come in to school. Trains and other things weren't running, and things were selectively closed. Some stores were open, some were not. It surprised me that Kinko's closed. They're usually open 24/7. A lot of the littler stores were closed because of the circumstances. Both bookstores were open though, and a lot of the stores people actually need, like CVS & the grocery store, stayed open. While I was walking home, I helped a woman find CVS. Since I was walking the same direction, I walked with her until she got there. She was quite nice, and was looking for CVS so that she could buy a pair of flip-flops. She wanted the shoes because the trains weren't running so she had to walk home or something, and wanted to be more comfortable than the heels she was wearing for her walk.

The atmosphere was oddly subdued when I was outside. I'd heard very briefly about the attack at that point, but I didn't know anything about the severity of it by then, so I remarked on it to myself. Considering that there weren't any classes, there were very few people outside. Most of them were probably glued to the television set or the phone, trying to get ahold of various relatives, I'm sure. There are a lot of people from the New York area here. It's not that far away after all. The people that were outside all seemed to have a rather dazed look on their faces, almost as if they couldn't believe what had happened.

I avoided the news about as much as I could all day. I'd seen enough. Probably more than enough, actually. The less I heard about it, the happier I would be. Well, not happier, but it just hurts me less if I don't hear too much about it. There is a reason I try to avoid the news after all. It depresses me too much. News is generally inescapeable anyway, if it's important enough, I hear about it somehow. I avoid most of the graphic details that way however, something I'm grateful for. I really don't need the graphic details, news depresses me enough as it is.

Instead, I saw message after message on both e-mails and message boards which did one or both of two things...offered prayers, condolances, etc. and/or called for retaliation and vengence. I can agree with the prayers and condolances...I think I have issues with the cries for retaliation and vengence though. Americans have a history of pulling together as a nation during times of trial. The World Wars are probably good examples. People scrimped and saved the things needed for the war effort and made do without some other things, plus working in factories and things to basically out-produce the German army and win. That sentiment is still prevelant today, so I'm sure we're going to be able to rally around our idiot of a President for whatever. Hmm...wasn't the last time we did this when Sr. was in office? Maybe people really don't like Bush for president.

So. Retaliation. Vengence. We want our towers back. Kill everyone responsible. I don't know how much I really agree with this. Obviously, you can't let people do things like this, society doesn't allow it. But how far do you go with an incident like this? Just how far do you place the blame? Blame the people actually responsible for the attack, certainly. But how far after that? Do we blame their religion, their entire family, and their country as well? Do we start World War Three over this and set off nuclear missles so that the entire planet suffers and dies? All for one act of terrorism? One thing I saw which particularly disturbed me blamed all of Islam, saying that they didn't support any organization that would manage to create people willing to commit suicide in the name of religion. Maybe I read this the wrong way, but I can name several Christian organizations which have done the same. I haven't met very many people who practice Islam, but the ones I have met have all been very nice people. Why are we always so quick to blame Arabs anyway? We can't blame the Russians any more after the end of the Cold War, so we'll move on to the new scapegoat? Not all Arabs are Muslims, and the vast majority of them aren't horrible terrorists who hate Americans either. Somehow I seem to feel like the small voice of reason here, and I don't think I'm going to be listened to.

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