The Place of the Lost Towers

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We still banging, we never lost power:


Federal agents and police detectives arrested a Connecticut man, a naturalized United States citizen from Pakistan, shortly before midnight Monday for driving a car bomb into Times Square on Saturday evening in what turned out to be an unsuccessful attack, Justice Department officials announced. 

There's an old lady who lives around the corner from me who rides a Rascal. I usually see her riding up and down Lennox, running errands. A few years back some idiot tried to rob the old lady in broad daylight. Now, Harlem is still hood, but there are always tons of people on the street, so attempting a robbery in broad daylight is plenty insane. The woman, as it turns out, was Bumpy Johnson's grand-daughter. She promptly pulled out a pistol and shot the robber.

When you live in a neighborhood that's targeted by thugs, a story like that always makes your day go a little better. And when you live in a city that's constantly targeted by thugs, a story like this makes your week go a little better. 

When 9/11 happened, I had just moved to the city and had some personal issues going on that prevented from immdediately grappling with what happened. This obviously isn't 9/11, but this is the first city I've ever lived in as a full-fledged adult, and thus the first city I've ever felt at home and invested in. I'm a New Yorker mostly because I say I'm one. 

Being a New Yorker, there is something personally disgusting about this perp attempting mass murder in my home. I feel a specific sense of pleasure in the fact that they caught him. Had this plot succeeded it likely would have made life problematic (to say the least) for me and many of the people who live here. If it turns out he's the wrong guy, I'll gladly take all this back. But for the moment, permit me this short rant--I'm so damn glad they caught this dude. Or to put it differently--America. Fuck. Yeah.
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Ta-Nehisi Coates is a national correspondent at The Atlantic, where he writes about culture, politics, and social issues. He is the author of the memoir The Beautiful Struggle. More

Born in 1975, the product of two beautiful parents. Raised in West Baltimore -- not quite The Wire, but sometimes ill all the same. Studied at the Mecca for some years in the mid-'90s. Emerged with a purpose, if not a degree. Slowly migrated up the East Coast with a baby and my beloved, until I reached the shores of Harlem. Wrote some stuff along the way.

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