10 September 2006

9/11 ... 2006

I have been pondering for some time whether and what to post today. On the one hand I feel tremendous sympathy for those who died so horribly in the crashes that day and for the families, loved ones and friends they left behind. That loss is unimaginable. On the other hand, there are so many people who feel wholly vicarious fear and pain for whom I have much less sympathy; that posture seems quite self-indulgent and seems, too, to fail to recognize the actual pain and loss of those who have been left behind.

Then, of course, there is the fact that BushCo have used 9/11 as an excuse to wreak havoc far and near. And they still do - as when, this past week, Bush surrounded himself with families of some of those who died on 9/11 while trying to spin the illegal detention and mistreatmtnet of prisoners. This is not to say that those who have been apprehended for allegedly taking part in the 9/11 attacks shouldn't be brought to justice, only that I doubt Bush and his minions are capabale of understanding what that actually means.

All that is far from the mark though. So here is an image that seems appropriate, taken in NYC on 9/18/01, a week after the WTC attacks.

© Paul Fusco / Magnum Photos

Two final things. First, I have not paid too much attention to plans for the memorial that is being planned for the WTC site in lower Manhattan (nor to the relative neglecct of the sites of the other crashes that occurred that day). So I thought it might be appropriate provide links to a couple of relevant web pages here and here. I understand that the selection process has been political and not everyone is happy with what is happening. I feel as though the candles in Fusco's picture are perhaps more appropriate. But that is naive, I suppose.

Second, I wanted to remind readersof the outpouring of images that people made in NYC on 9/11 and immediately thereafter. These were coordinated in the Here is New York: A Democracy of Photographs project which now is organizationally defunct. Instead, we are getting professionalized reflections like Joel Meyerowitz's Aftermath; I do not mean to be critical of Meyerowitz (you can find and interview with him here and some of his photographs here.). But again, it seems as though the more spontaneous responses of the less renowmed remain (if only they did remain) a more fitting tribute.



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