One year ago at this time, 2:02am ET, Omar Mateen entered the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, FL, and proceeded to murder 49 people and injure 53.
All autopsy reports showed that the victims were shot either from the side or from the front, at a close distance, multiple times. More than one-third were shot in the head. There were over 200 gunshot wounds in the 49 fallen. It wasn’t until Septemeber of last year that the last surviving victim was released from hospital.
The attack is the deadliest mass shooting by a single shooter in United States history; the deadliest incident of violence against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people in the history of the United States - surpassing the 1973 UpStairs Lounge arson attack - and the deadliest terrorist attack in the United States since the September 11 attacks in 2001.
It bothers me, and most of the LGBTQ community I would imagine, that such hatred still exists toward us in 2016/2017. In a time of political drama everyday, media tet-e-tets, and social firestorms, it’s more crucial than ever to maneuver in love, and strength, and understanding. Be strong, but don’t be stupid. Be alert, but don’t be scared. It breaks my heart that so many of us are still facing abusive interactions from random people and family. Where in the hell does it end?
Let’s never forget, and celebrate the lives of, the fallen.
Hey, since no one’s talking about it, I would like to remind you all that the Pulse attack was on this day last year.
On June 12, 49 people were killed and 58 others wounded in a terrorist attack/hate crime inside Pulse, a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, United States. The terrorist was shot and killed by Orlando Police Department (OPD) officers after a three-hour standoff. Pulse was hosting a “Latin Night” and thus most of the victims were Latinos.
It was both the deadliest mass shooting by a single shooter and the deadliest incident of violence against LGBT people in United States history. It was also the deadliest terrorist attack in the United States since the September 11 attacks in 2001.
i; in (ex. “in England” = i England") inside (ex. “inside London” = “inde i London”) at (ex. “he is at school” = “han er i skolen”)
på; on (ex. “on the ground/floor/wall/ceiling/coast/beach/chair/table” = “på jorden/gulvet/væggen/loftet/kysten/stranden/stolen/bordet”) at (ex. “he is at the school” = “han er på skolen”)
til; to (ex. “tied to a post” = “bundet til en pæl”) for (ex. “here is a letter for you” = “her er et brev til dig”)
fra; from (ex. “it is from him” = “det er fra ham”) off (ex. “keep your fingers off that book!” = “hold dine fingre fra den bog!”) out of (ex. “like something out of Hemingway” = “ligesom noget fra Hemingway”)
over; over (ex. “hold an umbrella over your head” = “hold en paraply over dit hoved”) above (ex. “the stars above us” = “stjernerne er over os”) beyond (ex. “far beyond his expectations” = langt over hans forventninger") across (ex. “walk across the lawn” = “går over plænen”)
under; under (ex. “under the bed” = “under sengen”) underneath (ex. “it’s underneath one’s jacket” = “den er under ens jakke”) below (ex. “below the level of the sea” = “under havet overflade) during ( ex. “during my stay in London” = “under mit ophold i London)
ved; at (ex. "at the next station” = “ved den næste station”) by (ex. “sit by the fire” = “sidde ved ilden”) on (ex. “their house is right on the sea” = “deres hus er lige ved havet”)
for; for (ex. “I will do it for you” = “jeg vil gøre det for dig” or “it was a pleasure for me” = “det var en fornøjelse for mig”) of (ex. “the goal of his journey” = “målet for hans rejse”) to (ex. “he was like a father to me” = “han var som en far for mig”) on (ex. “he shut the door on me” = “han lukker døren for mig”) from (ex. “they hid it from me” = “de gemte det for mig”) before (ex. “she held her hand before her eyes” = “hun holdt sine hænder for sine øjne”) in favor of (ex. “I am in favour of organic farming” = “jeg er for økologisk landbrug”)
efter; after ( ex. “she followed on after” = “hun fulgte efter”) afterwards (ex. “shortly afterwards” = “kort efter”) later (ex. “three days later” = “tre dage efter”)
om; round (ex. “it is just round the corner” = “det er lige om hjørnet”) about (ex. “with a sash about her waist” = “med et skærf om hendes liv”) of (ex. “what are you talking of?” = “hvad snakker du om?”) on (ex. “a book on gardening” = “en bog om havebrug”) a (ex. “once a month” = “en gang om måneden”) in (ex. “in the evening” = “om aftenen”)
med; with (ex. “he said it with a smile” = “han sagde det med et smil”) by (ex. “divide by five” = “dividere med fem”) on (ex. “he was not on the train” = “han var ikke med toget”) in (ex. “he said it in a friendly voice” = “han sagde det med en venlig stemme”) of (ex. “a week of snow” = “en uge med sne”) including (ex. “there’ll be ten of us, including your brother and sister” = “der vil være ti af os, med din bror og søster”)
af; of (ex. “the best of his three novels” = “de bedste af hans tre romaner” or “a product of good quality” = “et produkt af god kvalitet” or “a wall of clay” = “en væg af ler” or “an outburst of joy” = “et udbrud af glæde”) by (ex. “we were surrounded by friends” = “vi var omringet af venner”) off (ex. “she fell off her bike” = “hun faldt af sin cykel”) out of (ex. “he did it out of jealousy” = “han gjorde det af jealousi”) from (ex. “I don’t play to win, but from an interest in the game” = “jeg spiller ikke for at vinde, men af en interesse for spillet” or “her eyes were red from crying” = “hendes øjne var røde af at græde”) with (ex. “our boots were grey with dust” = “vores støvler var grå af støv”) on (ex. “they got high on cocaine” = “de blev høje af kokain”) for (ex. “that’s not bad at all for a beginner” = “det var ikke dårligt overhovedet af en begynder”)
ad; by (ex. “by that road” = “hen ad vejen” or “laugh at” = “grine ad”) at (ex. “come in at the door” = “kom ind ad døren”) by (ex. “enter by the door” = “gå ind ad døren”) through (ex. “come in through the door” = “kom ind ad døren”)
hos; with (ex. “I am staying with friends” = “jeg opholder mig hos venner”) at (ex. “I lived at my uncle’s” = “jeg boede hos min onkel”) from (ex. “the book is obtainable from all booksellers” = “bogen er opnåelig hos alle bodhandlere”) by (ex. “come and sit by me” = “kom og sid hos mig”) on, about (ex. “I had no money on/about me” = “jeg havde ingen penge hos mig”) in (ex. “anaemia is more common in women” = “anæmi er mere normalt hos kvinder”)
gennem; through (ex. “I am going through” = “jeg går igennem”)
mod; against (ex. “manuals is obtainable against payment” = “manualer er opnåelige mod betaling”) on (ex. “the terrorists attacks on the US on September 11, 2001” = “terroristerne angriber mod USA den 11 September, 2001”) opposite (ex. “in the opposite direction” = “i den modsatte retning”) to (ex. “our son-in-law is good to our daughter and their two children” = “vores svigersøn er god mid vores datter og deres to børn”) pointing towards , facing , to , towards , at (ex. “the town is pointing towards the mountains” = “byen er rettet mod bjergene”)
bag; behind (ex. “it is behind me” = “den er bag ved mig”)
foran; in front of (ex. “the car was parked in front of the house” = “bilen var parkeret foran huset”) before (ex. “the food was set before her” = “maden var sat foran hende”) ahead of (ex. “he got ahead of the others” = “han kom foran de andre”) op on (ex. “they are 10 points up on of the others” = “de er 10 point foran de andre”)
forbi; past, by (ex. “they ran past/by” = “de lov forbi”) over (ex. “the rain is over” = “regnen er forbi”) at an end (ex. “the war was at an end” = “krigen var forbi”) finished (ex. “the war was over but not finished” = “krigen var ovre men ikke forbi”)
før; earlier (ex. “I’ll get up earlier tomorrow” = “jeg vil stå op før i morgen”) before (ex. “I have been here before” = “jeg har været her før”) earlier [on] (ex. “as I said earlier” = “som jeg sagde før”) just now (ex. “but you said just now that …” = “men du sagde lige før at …”) formerly (ex. “formerly he worked for another firm” = “før arbejdede han for et andet firma”) used to (ex. “he used to work for another firm” = “han arbejdede før for et andet firma”)
inden; before (ex. “before April the first” = “inden den første april”) by (ex. “you must be here by Monday” = “du må være her inden mandag”) within (ex. “within an hour” = “inden en time”)
langs; along (ex. “we walk along the road” = “vi går langs vejen”)
mellem; between (ex. “we are between the cars” = “vi er mellem bilerne”)
omkring; about, round, around (ex. “the world about/around us” = “verden er omkring os” or “we sit round the table” = “vi sidder omkring bordet”)
uden; without (ex. “without his help” = “uden hans hjælp”)
These were the prepositions! I hope this was understandable and useful!
Encompassing 110,000 square feet of space, the 9/11 Memorial Museum was built to honor the victims of the terrorist attacks on both September 11, 2001 and February 26, 1993. The memorial cost $USD700 million to build, with funds being collected through both private and public donations. The museum presents 23,000 images, 10,300 artifacts, 500 hours of moving images and 1,970 oral histories.
The Memorial’s twin reflecting pools are each nearly an acre in size and feature the largest manmade waterfalls in North America. The pools sit within the footprints where the Twin Towers once stood.
On June 12, 2016, 29-year-old Omar Mateen killed 49 people and wounded 53 others in a mass shooting at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida. The attack was/is the deadliest single gunman mass shooting in United States history, the deadliest incident of violence against LGBT people in U.S. history, and the deadliest terrorist attack on U.S. soil since the September 11 attacks of 2001.
We stand strong, we stand together, we can fight hard, and we can win together.
Hard times will come but we’ll always come out alright in the end.
9/11 survivors may be at increased risk of heart and lung disease years later
People who were exposed to the dust cloud or sustained physical injuries during the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Centre on September 11, 2001 may be at increased long-term risk of asthma, other respiratory diseases and heart attack, according to a study published in the open access journal Injury Epidemiology.
Researchers at the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene examined the association between physical injury or acute exposure to the dust cloud on the morning of September 11, 2001, and chronic disease up to ten to eleven years later (2010-2012).
Dr Robert Brackbill, the corresponding author said: “Our findings indicate that intense exposure on a single day – the first day of the disaster – contributes substantially to the risk of developing chronic conditions. Continued monitoring of people who were present in the vicinity of the World Trade Center on 11th September by medical providers is warranted for the foreseeable future.”
The researchers found that the number of types of injuries, such as fractures, head injuries, or sprains, a person sustained on 11th September 2001 was associated with an increased risk of angina or heart attack in a dose-dependent manner, which means that the risk of having angina or a heart attack increased with every additional injury type. Dust exposure, PTSD and being a rescue worker, as well as current smoking were associated with a higher risk of non-neoplastic lung disease (lung conditions not involving tumors) other than asthma, while dust exposure on its own was associated with an increased risk of asthma. None of these risk factors were associated with a higher risk of diabetes.
Out of the total number of 8,701 people enrolled in this study, 41% had intense exposure to the dust cloud, 10% has a single injury, 2% had two types of injury and 1% had three or more. The researchers found 92 incident cases of heart disease, 327 new cases of diabetes, 308 cases of asthma, and 297 cases of non-neoplastic lung disease among 7,503 area workers, 249 rescue workers, 131 residents and 818 passersby – the most heavily exposed groups.
To examine the long term health effects of acute exposure to the dust cloud, or physical injury caused by the terrorist attack, the authors used data from the WTC Health Registry cohort. The WTC Health Registry monitors the physical and mental health of 71,431 persons exposed to the attacks on 9/11. It contains data collected during three waves in 2003-2004, 2006-2007 and 2011-2012. A fourth wave of data has been collected but not included in this study.
A lack of specific information on the severity, location and treatment of injuries, as well as on the circumstances in which they were sustained meant that the number of types of injuries was used as a proxy measure for injury severity. However, previous research has shown that more than one type of injury is associated with increased risk of death and longer stays in hospital, according to the authors.
The Windows on the World
on the North Tower (Building One) of the original World Trade Center complex in Lower Manhattan. Windows on the World was destroyed when the North Tower collapsed
during the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. At the time of the
attack on the World Trade Center, the restaurant was hosting regular
breakfast patrons and the Risk Waters Financial Technology Congress. Everyone present in the restaurant when American Airlines Flight 11
penetrated the North Tower perished that day, as all stairwells leading
to below the impact zone were blocked immediately. Victims trapped in
Windows died either from smoke inhalation from the fire, jumping or falling to their deaths, or the eventual collapse of the North Tower 102 minutes later.
At the time of the attacks, there were 72 restaurant staff present in
the restaurant, including acting manager Christine Anne Olender, whose
desperate calls to Port Authority police represented the restaurant’s final communications. 16 Incisive Media-Risk Waters Group employees, and 76 other guests/contractors were also present. After about 9:40 AM, no further distress calls from the restaurant were
made. The last people to leave the restaurant before Flight 11 collided
with the North Tower at 8:46 AM were Michael Nestor, Liz Thompson,
Geoffrey Wharton, and Richard Tierney. They departed at 8:44 AM and
survived the attack.
World Trade Center lessor Larry Silverstein
was regularly holding breakfast meetings in Windows on the World with
tenants as part of his recent acquisition of the Twin Towers from the
Port Authority, and was scheduled to be in the restaurant on the morning
of the attacks. However, his wife insisted he go to a dermatologist’s
appointment that morning, whereby he avoided death.
“Come from Away is a musical with book, music, and lyrics by Irene Sankoff and David Hein. It is set in the week following the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks and tells the true story of what transpired when 38 planes were ordered to land unexpectedly in the small town of Gander, Newfoundland as part of Operation Yellow Ribbon. The characters in the musical are based on (and in most cases share the names of) real Gander residents as well as some of the 7,000 stranded travelers they housed and fed. The show has been received by audiences and critics as a cathartic reminder of the capacity for human kindness in even the darkest of times and the triumph of humanity over hate.” (from wikipedia)
In September 1972, during the Munich olympic games, 8 palestinian terrorists from the group ‘Black September’ attacked 11 members of the Israeli olympic team and took them hostage, demanding the release of over 200 prisoners. This event became known as the ‘Munich Massacre’, as all 11 members were murdered.
Pictured above is the iconic image of one of the terrorists on the balcony of Apartment 1, where the hostages were initially held. Two of the hostages were shot and killed while in the apartment building during the initial attack. The remaining hostages were kept in this blood spattered apartment for less than 24 hours, during which the siege was widely televised and reported, and numerous rescue attempts failed. The terrorists had been specifically instructed not to hold the hostages for more than a day, and should their demands not be met they were to request an airplane to transport them and the hostages to a middle-eastern country of their choice.
During this process the German authorities saw another opportunity to ambush the terrorists at the runway, however the whole operation was poorly orchestrated and resulted in a fire fight that lasted over an hour. During this fight the hostages were bound together in two helicopters that had transported both them and the 8 terrorists to the air strip. In the middle of the gun fight the terrorists took the opportunity to throw a live grenade into one of these helicopters, while another terrorist emptied a machine gun into the remaining helicopter, killing all 9 of the surviving hostages.
It’s funny that I approached two seminal deconstructive works - Alan Moore, Dave Gibbons, and John Higgins’s Watchmen and Hideaki Anno’s Neon Genesis Evangelion - before I had experienced the media and the works that they were respectively deconstructing. I read Watchmen in high school, at a time when I was mostly reading Marvel Comics’s output. I didn’t have the frame of reference to understand how Moore, Gibbons, and Higgins were taking apart the idea of the lone vigilante motivated by a traumatic childhood or the godlike superman. I only realized the commentary Watchmen provided after the fact, and reading the commentary alongside the original text became a sport of its own.
Similarly, when I watched Neon Genesis Evangelion for the first time in college, I had not seen the mecha anime that Evangelion was examining. Just as Watchmen took apart the specific tropes and character archetypes of comic books through parallel characters (Dr. Manhattan is Superman, Nite Owl and Rorshach are Batman, the Comedian is Captain America, Silk Spectre is Black Canary), so was Evangelion dissecting the archetypes found in the mecha anime genre. (Shinji Ikari is
the ace teenage pilot, like Amuro Ray from Mobile Suit Gundam, Rei Ayanami is the shy, mysterious love interest who is obedient to the protagonist, Asuka Langley Soryu is the rival, hot tempered love interest and ace pilot.)
It’s striking that both deconstructive works found their analytical powers in presenting “real world” consequences of their genre’s respective and specific tropes through mental illness. Only someone suffering from severe mental health issues could attempt to wage a one-man war on crime by putting on a mask and fighting in the streets. A more realistic version of Batman, Moore, Gibbons, and Higgins, posited, would have to look more like Rorshach. Similarly, a scientist who is able to build giant robots that defend mankind would be even more cynical and monstrous than Astro Boy’s Dr. Tenma; he would look more like Gendo Ikari, who is incapable of maintaining any human relationships and treats everyone around him like dirt.
I revisit Evangelion more often than I revisit Watchmen, though Moore and Anno have made it difficult to follow their creative output. Moore’s return to the independent comics publishers to pursue more explicitly sexual, violent, and sexually violent works like Lost Girls, Neonomicon, The Courtyard, and Providence, while Anno’s attempt to retell Evangelion in a new context through the Rebuild of Evangelion movies has stalled with increasingly long delays. Evangelion 1.0: You Are (Not) Alone was released in Japan in 2007, while Evangelion 2.0: You Can (Not) Advance was released in 2009. Evangelion 3.0: You Can (Not) Redo was released in 2012, while production on the final
Rebuild of Evangelion
film has only barely begun.
Part of the delay in the Rebuild of Evangelion project was Anno’s and Shinji Higuchi’s involvement in Shin Godzilla, which is also known as Godzilla: Resurgence. Anno was contacted to direct Shin Godzilla after falling into depression after completing Evangelion 3.0. Principal photography for Shin Godzilla began in 2015, and the film was released in 2016. It re-positioned Godzilla as a creepy, scary monster, a force of man-made disaster that would serve as allegory for the Japanese triple disaster of the Tohoku earthquake and the subsequent tsunami and the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster of March 2011. (American films will allude to traumatic events in fiction, but more often than not American films will outright try to recreate the traumatic events. You might see Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice, for example, reference the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center, but you’re more likely to see movies that try to recreate that historical event, thereby compressing and distorting history. There’s actually more intellectual honesty in allegorical approach than trying to make a film based on a true story.)
Furthermore, while Anno and Higuchi criticized the Japanese government’s slow response to the disasters of March 2011 through the way actions to counteract Godzilla’s advance would have to flow from the theatre of action up to sub-commanders to deputy ministers to cabinet ministers to the prime minister, who would make a decision that would have to then travel down the same of communication chain before it was communicated, Anno and Higuchi showed great optimism and faith in Japanese infrastructure. Politicians who could be interpreted as weak or concerned about preserving their reputation could be reinterpreted as figures who are willing to give up power so the country could have a fresh start in the aftermath of Godzilla’s cataclysmic visit, figures who are willing to sacrifice their honor for the country’s sake, or figures who are willing to sacrifice their reputations so they could give citizens the best information they had at the time. There’s a lot of moving from one conference room to another that might seem unnecessary to the impatient viewer, but the conversations in those conference rooms are what lead to solutions.
It helps that Anno and Higuchi find sharp angles to film what could have been devastatingly dull conversations in these conference rooms.
Finding these new angles to show men and women working together to solve the Godzilla problem places the emphasis on their humanity and professionalism. Godzilla will not be defeated by sheer force of Japanese or American arms. While Anno and Higuchi uses gorgeous compositions to show the futile attacks on Godzilla by the Japanese Self-Defense Force, they also show the futility of these attacks in widescreen, captivating shots that also emphasize Godzilla’s magnitude.
Instead, Godzilla can only be defeated when Japanese industrial acumen, business connections, and American arms are combined to form a strategy that requires self-sacrifice and precise timing, hallmarks of Japanese industrial culture. The hope for Japan won’t be found outside the country. Conventional arms cannot defeat Godzilla. Outlandish non-conventional weapons, like MASER cannons or Mechagodzillas, aren’t feasible. Instead, the hope for survival and the future can be found in Japanese systems like its trains and its industries. It’s subtly nationalist in a way that matches resurgent Japanese nationalism under Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s regime.
Of course, none of this would have been possible if a team of Japanese scientists and officials who do not conform to their institutions had not been grouped together to find a solution. There’s a power to the bureaucracy, the film argues, in coordinating responses among different agencies and in bringing together the outsiders and non-conformists, and there is a role for the “lone-wolves, nerds, troublemakers, outcasts, academic heretics, and general pains in the bureaucracy” in any organization.
The film is similarly conflicted about Japan’s relationship with the United States. American officials are almost always depicted as faceless voices that demand from afar, sending a half-Japanese liaison, Satomi Ishihara’s Kayoko Ann Patterson, to connect with the Japanese crisis team. Ultimately, Patterson sides with the Japanese government at her own risk at a critical moment, prompting the idea that even those who are of Japanese descent living outside Japan are crucial to Japan’s future. Japanese officials are frustrated by American interference in their affairs; the American government goes so far as to propose using a thermonuclear weapon on Godzilla, which horrifies every Japanese official and even Patterson. In the end, the film taps into the renewed sense of Japanese nationalism by showing that Japanese officials can only move forward to solve the Godzilla problem by going their own way, defying the American attempt to take charge, and solving their problem their way.
(There’s probably an essay to be written about how the film treats its three principal female characters: Kayoko Ann Patterson, Mikako Ichikawa’s
Deputy Director of Nature Conservation Bureau
Hiromi Ogashira, and Kimiko Yo’s Defense Minister
Reiko Hanamori. Hiromi and Patterson are probably around the same age, and they’re equally outsiders. Patterson is the American half-Japanese liaison, while Hiromi is outspoken and somewhat socially awkward. Patterson is much more conscious about her physical appearance, while Hiromi wears no make-up at all. Reiko stands apart from them both; older than both other women, Reiko is a senior official in the Japanese cabinet and the military’s voice for the Prime Minister.)
Anno, Higuchi, and composer Shiro Sagisu also layer in plenty of homages for Evangelion fans. Based on my impressions, I’ve found these callbacks:
The use of the track “Decisive Battle” from the Evangelion soundtrack to spice up scenes of men and women working in conference rooms
The way the film places a visual emphasis on Japanese trains
The way Anno and Higuchi framed their shots of tanks, aircraft, and artillery pieces bombarded Godzilla in the same ways that they attacked Angels throughout Evangelion
The way they focused on Godzilla’s eyes to show its monstrosity in the same way they focused on Eva-01′s eyes to show its near-humanity
The way the final shot echoed the Failures of Infinity in the Evangelion: 3.0+1.0 teaser trailer at the end of Evangelion 3.33
The way the lights turned out in the underground shelter echoed the way the lights went out during an Angel attack
The way Godzilla attacked all around him echoed the way Ramiel defended itself in Evangelion 2.0
The way Godzilla’s blood plopped to the ground echoed the way various Angels’ blood would fall after they were killed
The way military officials were framed when they released their attacks on Godzilla/the Angels were ineffective
The Japanese Twitter user named “bakashinji” who had an Asuka avatar.
While the film is dialogue heavy, it never feels slow. And it’s a surprisingly funny film, from Godzilla’s googly eyes in its first appearances to the way that an official’s title becomes a visual gag in subtitles because it takes up almost half the screen.
It was everything that I had hoped for from a film by Anno and Higuchi: satirical, strangely hopeful, dynamically shot, wonderfully scored. In other words,