Sigh...: Man, Buzz is so gonna regret saying this, but here goes: If you believe that the attacks on the Pentagon and World Trade Center were not the feats of terrorists but a government conspiracy, you are—how do we put this diplomatically?—a moron.
Or maybe Rosie O'Donnell. Hard to say, really.
Yeah, yeah, we know what you're thinking. No shit, Sherlock. But see, that's your problem right there: You're not a moron. Well, what we mean is you could be, but we dunno really. You've read this far, after all. But you're definitely not a specific flavor of moron, the kind who will post angry messages demanding to know if we've looked at the evidence and arewepaidbyHalliburtonrotinhellnaïvefool.
Please don't bother. We're not listening. We'd sooner be baptized and become a holy roller than buy your brand of crazy, and trust us, that ain't gonna happen either.
We bring this up because a co-worker's relative is a student at the University of Texas in Austin. The kid was walking across campus on the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks this week when he saw a hornet's nest of people gathering around other people in T-shirts emblazoned with the words, "9-11 was an inside job."
The inside-jobbers had a little public address system through which they were preaching that George W. Bush, not Osama Bin Laden, was the guy responsible for the planes flying into the twin towers. Some of them appeared to be in their 50s, others were young.
Arrayed against them was a group of campus conservatives—not sure which variety—who had come out to oppose the inside-jobbers. The young conservatives were preaching that 9/11 was the work of al Qaeda, and therefore the United States needed to be in Iraq.
Buzz's colleague's relative was struck by the fact that neither side's argument really made sense. "Al Qaeda?" he asked. "Wasn't that Afghanistan?"
It's good to know that someone's public tuition dollars aren't going down a rat hole.
At one point a couple of the opposing debaters came close to blows, according to the UT student. He said hundreds of passing students gathered around and gave support to the debaters. The passing students seemed to be evenly divided between the al Qaeda foes and the inside-jobbers.
Pretty scary, you're thinking, right? Well, allow Buzz, ever the optimist, to suggest to you a silver lining: The W supporters and the conspiracy supporters were nearly thumping each other. Just imagine what would happen if they went at it hard. Just imagine a country filled with sane people. We can dream, people. We can dream.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you'll never miss Observer's biggest stories.