the Middle in Middle East | We
tears, shedding light
campus responds to Sept. 11
have all been changed. Like it or not, the world America woke to that
Tuesday would become, in a matter of hours, something that most tremble
to consider. Yet, maybe we need not. Ponder the wisdom of Paul Hofman
'78, who sent the following letter to the editor a week after the tragedy:
day last week The TCU Magazine landed on my doormat in Sussex just 20
miles outside London. I read with interest the article by Jennifer "jen-iff-ah"
Klein about her time in London, and was impressed. She seemed to have
spent her time well.
went back to 1976 when I, as a young Londoner, turned up at TCU to do
two years as a grad student in art, expecting to reinforce all my preconceptions
about American life, culture and politics.
I was reading
the article at work when the phone rang and a friend said, "Two planes
have hit the trade towers in New York."
then realizing it was no office joke, we turned to the BBC on the Web
and along with millions of others watched events unfold. People in the
office were rendered speechless (no work of any value was done that week).
My mother, who lived through the London blitz in the second war, spent
the week in tears in front of the TV. For us it was too much to bear.
true, Jennifer's observations on how many Europeans see America were right.
The way we see the world often seems very different. We Brits have become
cynical to terrorism and security threats, which have become part of daily
life, as Jennifer will tell you. I have friends in Belfast and knew someone
on the Lockerbie plane.
me assure you that when we stood in silence for three minutes on Friday,
and filled churches, and wept in front of the TV, it was no cynical gesture;
because we felt what you felt, and stood there in horror with you.
We have all
been affected, we have all been changed. We
are all one bit closer than before.
As for the
future? Well, maybe the leaders, political movers, terrorists and media
moguls would do well to start with Jennifer's article and listen to what
she has learned."