I’m at the point now in Terror where I have to describe a terrorist attack on the Statue of Liberty on July 4, 2000. It’s really hard to do, for it requires a revisit to a lot of painful things inside that have been left buried since 9/11. In addition, I have to look at things I love the way a terrorist would see them.
I mean, it’s really hard. But it’s necessary, not just for the story but also as a lesson about one of writing’s requirements: sometimes (infrequently, in my case) you have to go into the dark, alone.
One good thing from this: Up until now, I’ve had the knee-jerk reaction that all these security things at airports (and yes, at the Statue of Liberty, too) are invasive and won’t work. My knee isn’t jerking any more. I’m glad such measures are in force, and I begin to understand that Americans** are accepting it now not because we’re “sheeple” but only because we hope that these hard times will pass and it won’t be necessary in the future. It’s an act of both common sense and faith.
It is much better than the alternative. May the things I’m writing about in this story never come about!
But we are not the wise gods we would like to be. Will it work? Can America do this balancing act of sensible precaution/faith in the long term and still stay true to its heritage?
If you get a chance, watch Ken Burn’s segment on the Statue of Liberty in America. Netflix streams it. Don’t let James Baldwin get you down, either. Watch the whole thing – it’s pretty good.
God bless America!
**I may understand it better now, but I personally prefer not visit any place that has these procedures in place. I don’t like them, and flying, visiting some public monuments, etc., are not worth the hassle to me.