Went to an event last week at the Vet’s Hall in downtown Santa Cruz hosted by the Santa Cruz 9/11 Truth Network, just out of curiousity, mind you. The event was a screening of a meticulously argued film ‘9/11 Mysteries’ that examined the physics and logistics of the collapse of Twin Towers on 9/11/01.
I was surprised to find a full house for the screening, mostly young people — some even high-school age. It was an unusually large crowd for what is in fact the propagation of a very dangerous idea, that 9/11 did not happen like we’ve been told it did. If it’s false, this kind of thing undermines trust in democracy to an almost fatal degree and is yet another example of the kind of willful ideological thinking that is nothing short of a disease in contemporary America. If it’s true, well, it’s a much uglier and more horrifying scenario.
I went in extremely dubious of the idea of a conspiracy behind 9/11, believing that a) that the ineptitude of government usually trumps its evil and that b) it is a function of our times that all catastrophic events must come with a conspiracy theory attached. Unlike most Americans, I suspect, I have not seen the footage of the WTC collapse more than a couple of times, because I find it unbearable.
But, after seeing the film, I’m suddenly haunted by its unanswered questions and would like to see some kind of rebuttal testimony, not to reassure, but to assess the validity of the claims. Of course, the conspiracy theorists have a tougher job than the defenders of the official truth; they have to persuade us that an airplane bringing down a massive building designed not to be brought down is impossible, while the other side just has to convince us it may be possible.
The crowd was enthralled by the film, but afterward I saw many who were talking amiably and grinning, like the crowd who’d just seen the latest Bond film. I only felt like fleeing into the night to wrestle with my doubts about the world in solitude.