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This Week in History

by RACHEL SPURLOCK, Staff Writer

This week in 1920, a bomb went off on Wall Street as men trickled out of their workplaces to begin their lunch breaks. On September 16, 1920, the man responsible for the bombing drove a horse drawn carriage and parked it in front of U.S. Assay Office, moments later the bomb went off. The blast killed 30 and injured over 300 people. This would only be the beginning of a series of September bombings that would strike New York City.

A little over 80 years later, New York City was again the target of yet another devastating act of terror, the 9/11 attack.  With such close proximity to the World Trade Center, the Manhattan College community was affected by what transpired that day. In 2001, nearly every issue of The Quadrangle featured some kind of article paying tribute to victims, reporting on the aftermath, or spotlighting MC students who lost loved ones in the attacks.

The September 25, 2001 volume of The Quadrangle, the first issue published after the attack, was dedicated to the coverage of what happened that day. One of the most encapsulating pieces of that issue was entitled “The Day That Changed Everything” by Rob Becker. He wrote, “…When those two planes crashed through our towers crunching steel and incinerating bodies, a little hole was punched in the proverbial bubble that has always seemingly protected us.” This “proverbial bubble” that Becker referred to was damaged yet again after the recent Chelsea bombings that occurred over this past weekend.

Given Manhattan College’s proximity to New York City we are often exposed to these dark chapters of history in ways that other college campuses are not. After what transpired on Saturday night, many students received worried text messages and phone calls from their loved ones asking if they were close to the bombings. Another piece from the September 25, 2001 volume included an article titled “WTC Tragedy: An Attack on Humanity” by Mike Somma. His thoughts on the 9/11 attack once again become relevant in light of the bombing that occurred on Saturday night. Somma writes, “At times like this, we cannot let ourselves be afraid, if for no other reason than to stand in defiance of those want to make us afraid.” What Somma wrote in 2001 still rings true today, we as a community cannot live in fear, we must come together during these times of tragedy and help one another move forward.

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