siderea: (Default)
posted by [personal profile] siderea at 10:27pm on 11/09/2014
A couple of reasons I think. For one, I suspect for a huge number of Americans, it was The Day 'It Can't Happen Here' Got Proved False. American exceptionalism and isolationism got blown open. War, aside from our shooting one another, was something Americans thought of as happening Over There (and perhaps this demonstrates that Americans don't entirely think of Hawaii as part of "here", or perhaps that things that happen prior one's lifetime don't count in that emotional reckoning.)

For another, the very reason NY was targeted by those who wanted to terrorize Americans in the first place: NY is the capital city of America's heart. NY has never been just another place to Americans. For all the middle of the country (whether the physical middle or the economic middle) has tried to position itself rhetorically as the "real America", the real real America against which they always contended in vain has always been NYC. It is the synecdoche of our country. The strikes against Washington were understood as strikes against our government; the strikes against NYC were understood as strikes against us.

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