The 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks passed without incident, despite the constant whistle of “suspicious package!” and two F-16 fighter jet escorts after a couple drunk guys had to pee a lot and one couple decided to join the Mile High Club on the worst day possible (maybe his package was suspicious).
In an effort to prevent any mayhem over the weekend, security was ramped up throughout New York City. Not only did that mean vehicle checkpoints, but Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said the NYPD would be “effectively increasing by a third the size of our patrol, transit and counterterrorism, highway and traffic bureau” until last week’s unconfirmed threat remained in place.
NYC residents will continue to see bomb-sniffing dogs, heavily armed officers and bag checks.
“Whatever it takes, you know what I mean? You can’t let these people, you know, take advantage of this city, of this country,” Belfiore said. “If this is what we gotta do, this is what we gotta do. I don’t mind.”
Perhaps most amazing of all is that residents of the city were helping keep the city safe by reporting suspicious packages. Over the weekend, police received three times the normal number of suspicious package reports. Some 342 calls were placed to police, up from the average of about 90.
On the one hand, it’s a bit unfortunate that people seem fine with the police state mentality. On the other hand, as much as the 9/11 attacks were done to America, outside of NYC (and possible Oklahoma City), it’s hard to fathom the psychological toll something like takes on a city.
So yeah, it’s better to be safe than sorry — as trite as that sounds. Ramped-up police and people reporting every suspicious package may feel like overkill, but no one wants to live through another 9/11.