General Cycling Discussion - Shock waves
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09-21-01, 10:25 PM
The recent catastrophic events have sent shock waves through the U.S., its government, economy, daily life. These shock waves are being felt around the world.
Even Bikeforums has felt the pulse. But just like the rest, we will recover and go on with what is important. Wiser, but even more
appreciative of the things we love about life, and those we love.
Just like we have been told, the best thing for us to do is to keep on living our lives, though we are in pain. We have lost our innocence, but not our love of life.
09-22-01, 08:38 AM
A zen saying goes, "Before enlightenment, draw water, chop wood. After enlightenment, draw water chop wood." Perhaps the word "enlightenment" could be replaced with "bad things." "Before bad things, draw water, chop wood. After bad things, draw water, chop wood." This is not meant to make light of the tragedies that have happened, but just a reflection on how life still has to be lived, regardless of what happens.
09-22-01, 09:34 AM
Okay... I'm going to post something that will probably be misinterpreted, but here goes...
Something terrible happened last week. Thousands of people died. The most powerful country in the world was viciously attacked. I feel nothing but sympathy for the people who lost family and friends and a great deal of trepidation about the future. The world changed in one of those axis moments and it doesn't look like the first years of the 21st century are going to be all that pleasant.
There will be a war. Young men and women, motivated by the highest ideals will die in the service of their countries; more civillians and non-combatants on both sides will die, caught in the cross-fire. Perhaps most chillingly, in order to fight this war, the combatants and -- to some extent -- all of us will have to strip away some of our humanity and decency, and we'll have to do it to "get the job done." Maybe that's necessary and inevitable, but it's also quietly horrifying, because we've seen in the past what good, decent people can do "to get the job done."
So I will not minimize the scale of the tragedy or downplay the fear and horror I feel about the future.
But I had an epiphany watching the telethon last night... No offense to my American friends, but US culture has become quite adept at turning almost any horrible situation into an excuse for maudlin mawkishness. The flag goes up, ribbons go on every tree and generally dull-witted entertainers appear in soft-focus with furrowed brow talking about the depth of their pain and how America is "a beacon of freedom and democracy to the world."
Then, everyone gets together and sings an over-wrought version of god bless america just in time for the American pietistic impulse to kick in, so we can all talk about god.
This, I guess, is how Americans deal with national tragedies in the 21st century. I hope it provides comfort and helps Americans get through this difficult time because it all looks and sounds so uttetly contrived and cynical to me.
09-22-01, 09:56 PM
Originally posted by velocipedio
I hope it provides comfort and helps Americans get through this difficult time...
I think it raked in about $70 million for the victims' families.
You have in fact opened the door. While I was certainly not angered by your post I will have to disagree. People handle stress, disaster and heart break in different ways. My way never includes crying but, I will quickly admit that tears came to my eyes as I watched police and fireman pull the bodies of my countrymen out from under huge buildings. I admired these same emergency service professionals as they ran willingly to their death in hopes of rescuing their fellow countrymen. I would hope that no one would accuse me of being trite or disingenuine. Certainly Americans should fly our colors more often than holidays and tragedies such as this and perhaps after this tragedy, this generation will. I pray a similar act never occurs in your beautiful country nor mine ever again.
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