SHORT WRITINGS



GLITTER 911

September 11, 2021 (posted to instagram story)
The [above image] may seem insensitive and inappropriate to post on a day when many in the US are supposed to mourn innocent lives lost in NYC at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. I post this as a reminder to also mourn innocent lives lost around the world and lives STILL falling to a devastating system power.
In the [above] short clip are icons and representations of ideology, as is the case with most images. The clip is from "9/11," a once living spectacle.
9/11 as we know it was a visual metaphor spread on screens by world media outlets in real time from physical dimensions. Now existing in archives and repertoires, many, especially in the US, are told to memorialize and remember this day through these images. Too often this memory is framed as an "attack on our freedom and values." It was an "attack on values" as it is often said but those "values" need to be examined as they may not be our own. 
On September 11, 2001 an attack was carried out on global capitalism and world trade and the war machine with which the systems of capitalism have a symbiotic relationship. This happened at the World Trade Center in lower Manhattan, then dubbed “Ground Zero.” 
9/11 was an attack on a "value" system that has caused the loss of millions of lives and will continue to destroy many more (now primarily through environmental disaster). The spectacle that was of course a tragedy on 9/11/2001 was 'glitter' in multiple meanings of the word. In one meaning, which this clip points to, 9/11 was a shiny thing, entertainment via screen that distracted many while the world transformed in an instant via policies and public opinions fueled by fear. These weaponized, fear inducing images/ "reminders" of 9/11 were ultimately used to benefit the war machine and its relationships of greed and power (see Halliburton and then Vice President Dick Cheney for one easy to digest instance). 
The symbolism of these buildings, what they housed and stood for must be examined if they are in fact bearers of “values.” Mariah Carey as an icon of US popular culture, who also later blamed 9/11 for the failure of the film) juxtaposed to the now iconic images of the fiery towers were appropriated and imbued with “our values and freedom” under attack from a dangerous Other. We must see the “Other” and the tragedy of life lost for centuries to a brutal, destructive and greed induced machine of Empire and capitalism—true values the US and its trade allies. 
These “values” are upheld by images of spectacle on screen, such as the film Glitter the coverage of 9/11 and the flurry of image is absorbed on social media including these posted by me today and otherwise. 
Because these symbols were not examined, two wars were directly waged in Iraq and Afghanistan almost immediately after 9/11/2001. It is safe to say we can now in 2021 easily discover and observe the devastation this caused and will continue to inflict on innocent lives, though not in the US. This is not to legitimize any lives lost, but again, to think of the many lives lost we may forget because of Glitter, the glitter and spectacle (i cannot get the recent images from kabul out of my head).
There was only one vote in Congress on 9/14/2001 against the invasion of Iraq and Afghanistan. It was rep Barbara Lee of California. We must pay her our respect and thank her for understanding and thus teaching us the meanings of these metaphors, symbols and images and the propaganda and weapons they became—the glitter, the spectacle.
And the time-traveling ticktoker that shot the [above] clip is Luigi Cazzaniga. The clip is from a longer 23:00 video shot as the amatuer videographer moved through Mannhattan on the morning of September 11, 2001.


Sources:
Luigi Cazzaniga Tape, Enhanced Audio, seen at 6:46
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iwEPNZ3ZV00
What Do Pictures Want? https://g.co/kgs/ecK4KM
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