On September 11, 2001, Fang and I had just moved to Davis. We only had rabbit ears on the TV and we were using our old dial-up internet access from Southern California. We were watching NBC, and when we saw, through the static, the first WTC tower fall, Fang said, “This country is about to go screaming to the right.”
He was, alas, correct, and I regret all the pain countless U.S. Americans and others around the globe have experienced on that day and since. I see my students who are veterans struggle with PTSD and physical pain, and I think about all the first-responder and war widows and widowers, as well as the vast suffering and loss of life of civilians in the Middle East.
I’m tired of Islamophobia, which I still see not only in the media but also in my Facebook stream from people I respect and trust and love.
I’m tired of jingoism and shallow, flag-waving patriotism and end times rhetoric. I’m tired of the profiteering of American companies in the Middle East and North Africa.
I’m tired of it all.
Can we please, today and always, speak and act with love and compassion and generosity rather than fear and violence?