|sent from: London, UK. destination: El Monte, California, USA|
For about 10 years I listened to Howard Stern religiously, until his move to satellite radio. I’d been seeking out old shows, and stumbled across an archive of his show from 11th September 2001. I listened to the whole thing. Listened to it as he and his staff responded to the events of that day as they unfolded live. I could see the images they were reacting to, seared into my mind’s eye.
I think it’s a valuable archive; for broadcasters who want an example of staying calm in a crisis, while simultaneously expressing the horror and anger of the moment. More important still, for historians and students, to listen to the confusion and disorientation, the misreporting of other crashes and explosions, the speculations of who might have done it, and why.
Amidst the scattershot theories, it’s incredible how many things they got right. Bin Laden’s name came up almost immediately, and the questions about intelligence failures and accountability haunt us to this day. Less admirable was the racism towards anyone in the middle-east, and condescention of those who would dare question America’s supremacy in all things.
Mostly, however, I could feel only admiration – he towed a fine line between calm center and expressing the rage and confusion of his listeners.