Dispatch from the Razor's Edge, the Blog of Michael Stephen Fuchs
2002.09.11 : 2001.09.11
"Into the riven village falls the rain;
Days pass; the ashes cool; he builds again"
        - Edna St. Vincent Millay

     I am watching the reading of the names of 9/11 victims at Ground Zero, on television. (I'm in a place with a television, which today I'm grateful for.) As the names rolled by, as did the images of the loved ones down in the footprints of the missing buildings laying flowers, I was deeply struck by what all these people looked like – there's a crewcutted SE Asian guy . . . there's a black guy with his pretty mixed-race looking daughter . . . incredibly Anglo seeming guy with sideburns . . . woman in a sari – and the sound of the names of the "Americans" the terrorists killed. I wrote down just a few of the Ps as they scrolled by.
    In that moment (just a few moments ago), I decided this is probably the second coolest thing about this country. As someone recently suggested, everything you really need to know about America might be encapsulated in the facts that our best rapper is white, and our best golfer is black. You want to kill us? Well, don't try to spot us on the street, or dig us out of the phone book. We're everybody. Heck, we're you. It was pointed out in the Times that, to this day, 36% of New Yorkers were born in some other country – and that "considering what ethnic differences have done to cities like Sarajevo, Belfast and Jerusalem . . . the five boroughs are a living embodiment of what the United States is all about: diversity, tolerance and equality under the law."
    If it's true that virtually all conflict, historically, has been conflict between groups, based on group identification . . . well, then, please consider that in our stirring of the pot so vigorously there is hope. Someone once said that miscegenation was the best solution to racism – as it's impossible to hate your own grandchild. Well, come on over and write that large. All are welcome in this place.

    The main thing I seem to be learning (and re-learning, and re-learning) on this journey is that it is always all about the other people.

    May the families and friends of those lost find peace (and strength, and hope). And may we all see an end to all violence soon, soon, soon.
  9/11     america  
close photo of Michael Stephen Fuchs

Fuchs is the author of the novels The Manuscript and Pandora's Sisters, both published worldwide by Macmillan in hardback, paperback and all e-book formats (and in translation); the D-Boys series of high-tech, high-concept, spec-ops military adventure novels – D-Boys, Counter-Assault, and Close Quarters Battle (coming in 2016); and is co-author, with Glynn James, of the bestselling Arisen series of special-operations military ZA novels. The second nicest thing anyone has ever said about his work was: "Fuchs seems to operate on the narrative principle of 'when in doubt put in a firefight'." (Kirkus Reviews, more here.)

Fuchs was born in New York; schooled in Virginia (UVa); and later emigrated to the San Francisco Bay Area, where he lived through the dot-com boom. Subsequently he decamped for an extended period of tramping before finally rocking up in London, where he now makes his home. He does a lot of travel blogging, most recently of some very  long  walks around the British Isles. He's been writing and developing for the web since 1994 and shows no particularly hopeful signs of stopping.

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