With everything happening from Hurricanes Harvey and Irma and today being the 16th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, it seems bizarre to write something trite or funny, so I thought I would just include some articles that I felt were impactful and interesting.
1). Refinery29 – 9/11 Survivor Essay:
I grew up in the greater New York City area in the aftermath of 9/11, (I was six in 2001), and a lot of what I know is from friends and family talking about it. We grew up hearing a lot of personal accounts of what everyone was doing that day (friends, peers, adults) so I haven’t read many accounts of what people went through. And it wasn’t until I was much older that I watched a video of the actual day.
I really enjoyed this piece by Margaret Lazaros in Refinery29 because, while it was brief, it was totally beautiful and heartbreaking to hear from someone who worked in the World Trade Center. She writes about walking away from the buildings as they fell (that’s a common thread amongst the retellings – the walking, the sneaker stores opening their doors for women in heels) and trying to get to her daughter. If you have a few minutes, I highly recommend it.
2). Vox – Climate change in Harvey and Irma:
Right off the bat, the author, David Roberts, says that talking about climate change distracts from the very real, and very dangerous, present. So first, make sure that you’re keeping up with the day-to-day news of the hurricanes and their aftermath, as well as checking on anyone who might be affected. But in a big picture way, this article touches upon the misconceptions and miscorrelations between climate change and the recent hurricanes.
The article points out that “climate change” is itself not an active participant in these storms. Areas like Florida and Texas are particularly susceptible to storms, based on their location and topography, and there are major issues with emergency responses and current adaptations. However, climate change comes into the situation as a multiplier – it increases the risks and situations gradually. Ignoring that climate change can and will change how storms affect the land in the future makes preparations less and less apt.
3). CNN – Pull quotes from Steve Bannon’s 60 Minutes interview:
Steve Bannon, who recently departed his position as Donald Trump’s chief strategist, sat down with Charlie Rose for his first public interview since the change. From the interview, Chris Cillizza, CNN Editor-at-large, pulled 48 quotes and examined them.
Bannon was the consummate outsider – and built a career in Washington from that – so it’s no surprise that his interview was telling. He talks about his hatred for the “elites” (“Limousine liberals”); he repeatedly slams Republicans (the Bush administration, Mitch McConnell, Paul Ryan); his displeasure with the six-month delay of the DACA shut-down (he would’ve done it immediately); and a pivot towards 2020. What I found most interesting about this article was Cillizza’s take – on some points, he agrees with the logic behind Bannon’s talks, and on others he disagrees wildly. I think it’s important to have journalists like this, because it disproves the notion that all media is against Trump on everything out of spite. There’s logic behind it.
4). CSPAN – Karen Caudillo interview:
A shorter clip of this interview with DREAMer and University of Central Florida junior Karen Caudillo went viral on Facebook from the NowThis account, and I think for good reason. In the longer, five-minute interview, Caudillo is being interviewed and gradually breaks down while discussing herself and her family.
What stuck with me the most was her concern more for “younger” DACA recipients. Caudillo is only a junior in college, and she was more concerned for people like her cousin, who is 15. The fact that someone facing the potential threat of deportation is more concerned about protecting other people was something really beautiful. And the line “I should be studying for a test tomorrow, but I’m here” slammed into me. I wrote last week about DACA, and I feel really passionately about it, but it’s completely different seeing its effects in the flesh.
She’s just a kid, probably no older than 21, who has school and her future and graduation and tests. She shouldn’t have to worry about being deported to a country that she knows nothing about or giving up every opportunity and chance she has in America. DACA recipients are more than just DACA recipients, they’re outstanding Americans who took a risk by registering for something that could now be used to ruining their lives.
These are just some articles and videos that I found impactful and interesting this week. If there are any that you’ve seen recently that you think are good, please let me know.