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View Diary: Significant Adverse Effects (88 comments)

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  •  i knew this (none)
    I'm once again not surprised by this. I was standing two blocks from the south tower when it collapsed and what was in that air was not just a little dust. I was quite surprised when the EPA first put out the release in the initial days after 9/11 particularly considering I think I had chunks of dry wall and paint in my throat. As I said, it's sad but I'm not surprised by this. Anyone in Lower Manhattan that day could tell you the EPA was lying.
    •  Yes, I remember (none)
      it wasn't dust we were breathing and that people were covered in.  Plus, we breathed it in for weeks, even those of us not at Ground Zero, but who lived in the area.

      "By focusing fear and hatred on the Tutsi, the organizers hoped to forge solidarity among Hutu." -- Human Rights Watch

      by a gilas girl on Tue May 18, 2004 at 05:13:24 PM PDT

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      •  I remember the smell (none)
        Burning plastic and metal. You could almost taste it. Burned for over a month. I never had allergies before then, now I do as do several others that I know.

        As far as the protests are concerned I work a block away from MSG and they are already talking about cordoning off blocks around MSG for "security" reasons with only those with business in the area able to get through. That asshole Bloomberg will rollover like the shitzu that he is for Bushco. Well hopefully I'll be on the inside and I will yell loud enough for all of us. Either that or I'll have a 4 day vacation and will be partying with all of you in the free speech zone!

        •  Plastic, metal, and (none)
          there was something else in that smell -- the victims.  I lived on the Upper East Side at the time and only had the "smoke" in my neighborhood for a few days, but a friend in Brooklyn told me about how that smell lingered long after the attacks.  That was an organic smell.
        •  Part 2 (none)
          As for the "security zones", we live within six blocks of MSG (see my handle), and are planning to leave town when the GOP invades our city.  I had a conversation with Gene McCarthy back in '92 about the '68 convention and he was telling me how he could smell the tear gas in his hotel suite twenty or thirty stories up in his hotel in Chicago.  I don't want to expose my infant daughter to that smoke or to the ugliness that those Republicans represent, so we are getting out of town.  
          •  I wonder (none)
            if people can still get that angry. I don't see it. I marched in the Iraq war protests and saw the majority of people were smiling and happy, not angry. Sure one was held on the first sunny spring day of the year so most couldn't help but smile -  but the dancing and organized music kinda bothered me. A striking visual for me was when a bunch of college students tried to stop police cars from moving through the crowd by laying in the street. The police got out and asked them to get up and they smiled and returned to the crowd. I'm sure they told their friends back at the dorm all about how they stopped traffic at the protest. Not exactly Tianemen Square. I was much more in favor of serious faces and total silence in deference to the lives that were about to be lost - which would have been deafening. Here we were on the eve of American empire and I think very few in that crowd understood the consequences. Most just wanted to relive the good old protest days or experience some of those fun stories they've heard from their parents. Well that was just my take. I just don't think we are being served well by even our most liberal news media s very few understand the urgency of the situation. Most think that all we need to do is to vote Bush out of office and everything will be back to normal.

            Vietnam was much more visual in '68 and the drafting of a lot of unwilling soldiers, the assassinations of Kennedy and MLK, LBJ... None of what happened in '68 was really anticipated by the Chicago police. In NYC it will probably be over anticipated. I think the Miami FTAA protest was only a dress rehearsal for what is going to happen in NYC. It will be martial law. Every street for miles around MSG will be teaming with overwhelming force. It will be made impossible to protest. This is where we are now, and all I can think about are those girls at the march dancing in unison with replica missiles on their chest...

      •  I went down (none)
        for a job interview in November (after spending the last 9 months unemployed) and remember the way ALL moisture in my mouth, eyes, nose dried up. I lived in Washington Heights at the time, and between that creepy feeling and seeing the devastation first hand (I couldn't bring myself to go down there before then) ... words can't describe the feelings of sadness & despair.

        I always figured it was worse than they were saying, but not THIS bad.

        The world is on its elbows and knees, It's forgotten the message and worships the creeds. Armageddon days are here again Matt Johnson

        by Madman in the marketplace on Tue May 18, 2004 at 06:08:08 PM PDT

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        •  another depressing reminiscence (4.00)
          I was working in a hospital on West 12th St. - a 40-minute walk from the towers - from the upper floors you could see the expanding ball of dust blotting half of lower Manhattan out of sight almost completely like The Blob.  I couldn't imagine that anyone could be alive inside that.  No dust on me, or on my place in Brooklyn, but you could smell that burning plastic smell everywhere in the hospital with the windows closed.

          I didn't take care of any of the survivors, but a few days later I had a very sick patient in his 50s, suffering from severe emphysema, with no prior history of lung problems.  He and his wife were from the Midwest - they had dropped everything to come work as emergency volunteers at the site.  They'd never imagined that this would be the result.

          I didn't venture far from home & job for quite a while, so I didn't really realize that so many people had gone back to work downtown - I never took the EPA assurances seriously & didn't imagine that others would, given the way everything smelled and the presence of a huge pillar of smoke for weeks.

          One of my closest friends was standing on the corner of Liberty Square during the collapse, and staggered home covered in gray from head to toe.  He's been emotionally shaky ever since, but free of physical illness so far.  Me, I developed somewhat debilitating chronic asthma gradually over the next year, which barely responded to treatment, but cleared up as soon as I moved out of town.  Now and then I wonder something awful is going to show up in one of us, and everyone else.

          Wish I could think of a lighter note to end on, but I can't.

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