The September 11, 2001, attacks were horrific. Nearly 3,000 people died. It was horrible, but not nearly as horrible as Hiroshima or Nagasaki. It was also elegant. A few determined, religiously-devout individuals, using their enemies’ own technological marvels, flattened the iconic towers of the greedy and tyrannical infidels and attacked the center of their military might. The attack continued the 300-year Crusades of long ago and ignited both focused and misguided retaliations which only further served to incense the faithful. And the faithful will fight forever, no matter the cost. The attacks taught us that the power of strongly-held superstitious beliefs will trump the most powerful of contemporary humanitarian concerns. Does anyone think that those suicide bombers would have been willing to die if they did not believe themselves to be righteous martyrs who would reap eternal rewards in an afterlife? Such beliefs will always pose a deadly risk for everyone.
"...the faithful will fight forever, no matter the cost."
I was born in 1946 and raised in the Bywater district of New Orleans.
I attended Jesuit High School and then Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, graduating in 1968 with a major in psychology and a minor in philosophy. In 1968-69, I did graduate study in personality at the University of California, Berkeley, I returned to LSU to pursue a Ph.D. in clinical psychology although my dissertation was on the psychology of sculpture. I completed my internship at the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Palo Alto, California, and then became a staff psychologist there specializing in the treatment of men with severe substance use disorders. During those years I also taught at Stanford's School of Education and was a clinical educator in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences in the Medical School.
I also taught at Palo Alto University, and, in 2008 I retired from the VA and became a full-time professor at PAU and then retired from there in 2013.