"[This book] embodies the Buddhist wisdom about change, life, and the
world more than anything written after the events of that day."
Robert Stone

May 2010 Archives

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May 31, 2010


The Times’s Clyde Haberman has a thoughtful column that answers the question, “Should a new Islamic center be allowed to be built close to Ground Zero?” The answer: Absolutely. “It is guaranteed in the First Amendment, the same one that ensures freedom of religion, with no asterisk that says ‘*except for Islam.’ It is the same amendment that allows a strip joint and a porno shop to exist a couple of blocks from hallowed ground.”

Haberman also points out that “since long before the Islamist terrorist attack of Sept. 11, 2001, a storefront mosque has been sitting on West Broadway in TriBeCa, a dozen blocks from the World Trade Center. No one seems to have ever minded its being there.”

The hysteria surrounding the proposed Islamic center has been misplaced, the public energy wasteful and debilitating. Moreover, the new institutions that grow up around the site should be expanding--not limiting--connections and understanding, building bridges between religious, ethnic, cultural, and social communities. This sturm und drang has some of the same poisonous tenor that surrounded opposition to the proposed International Freedom Center near Ground Zero, a flawed but virtuous endeavor, which died on the vine in 2005.

...On this remembrance day, I recommend a look at Alan Chin's images of the ceremonies surrounding the return to Dover Air Force Base of the remains of U.S. soldiers fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan.

To all: a reflective and peaceful Memorial Day.

May 24, 2010


A must-read article by the New York Times's Jesse KcKinley about Jennifer Karady's stunningly innovative exhibition, now on display at SF Camerawork, a gallery in San Francisco, using staged documentary-style photography as a way of channeling war veterans' post-conflict trauma.

May 9, 2010


Photographer Celia Shapiro has never before shared her images of the World Trade Center site, taken on the verge of the millennium, from 1990-2000, all prior to the 9/11 attacks. She has now put her quite compelling work up online and they are shown here for the first time.

May 7, 2010

Terror's tiniest traces

Among the most perceptive columnists’ accounts this week assessing the saga of the would-be Times Square bomber was Jim Dwyer’s New York Times piece, “A Suspect Leaves Clues at Every Turn.”