The school gathered both in prayer in the chapel, as well as a community in Morrell Gymnasium to commemorate the one year anniversary of September 11. In a similar fashion, the Brunswick Area Interfaith Council held a noontime prayer service for the college and town of Brunswick at the First Parish Church, and the school was again called to join together for a panel discussion at 8:00 pm in Pickard Theater.
Although the discussion filled only about 2/3 of the theatre, it was perhaps the greatest The panel brought together Dorcas Gilpatrick, Associate Director of the Maine Chapter of the Civil Liberties Union; Laurence Pope, Former US Ambassador and member of the Bowdoin College Class of 1967; Brig. Gen. Joseph Timkham, Director of Homeland Security for the State of Maine; and Dov Waxman, Assistant Professor of Government at Bowdoin.
Barry Mills began the discussion by telling the community, "I was very proud of the college that day." Mills went on to say that he believed that rather than "relive the painful events of that day," he had decided to "bring thoughtful people together" to discuss issues which continue to be relevant in an academic setting in light of the terrorist attacks. Following these remarks, Craig Mc Ewen, Dean for Academic Affairs, and acting as moderator, introduced Pope as the first speaker.
Pope believed that, although the military response was "a justified one, Washington far too often uses military force as a first rather than last resort." Pope went on to note that the "balance of power is tilted towards the radical wing. These are perilous times and [with the current military action] we are riding for a fall."
Waxman, next to speak, centered his commentary on refuting the claim that "the world has changed." He went on to dispel five points made about September 11th, which he believed to be incorrect. Waxman disagreed with the assertion that globalization would change, that the Bush administration would work with Allies, and that the world would retreat to isolationalism. Rather, Waxman contended that changes, especially economic ones, in America are due more to "executives at Enron" than the events of September 11. He also emphasized that, not unlike during the Cold War, America still considers the world "in 'us and them' terms," and that "the movement toward unity has quickly evaporated." Although Waxman noted that the world has not changed, he emphasized that we "should not take comfort in continuation with the world which created 9/11."
Timkham, the next to speak, focused more on the domestic changes since September 11, particularly in the state of Maine. He concentrated on the "hundreds of vulnerabilities" which were found in the state of Maine, and how security has changed to address many of these problems. He concluded by mentioning that Maine will be receiving government funds in the next year to increase security, and that funding will be felt throughout the state.
The final speaker, Gilpatrick, voiced her concern "of what would happen to our civil liberties." She went on to say that the Bush Administration is "completely contemptuous of the law" in its detainment of 1,200 Americans, who have yet to be accused of any crime, for investigation. She also touched upon some new initiatives of the Bush administration, including the American Patriot Act, which she believed were inappropriate. Gilpatrick concluded her commentary by warning "don't trust the government when they say 'trust us, we'll do the right thing', they won't, and history tells us so."