Thousands of people are missing, the country is suffering shock, anger, and grief over the World Trade Center, Pentagon, and Pennsylvania airline crashes, and Noel Petrie has nothing better to concern herself with than her World Bank/International Monetary Fund protests (“The First Day of the Rest of Our Lives,” “Displaced Anger,” 9/14). What a pity! They might be canceled. Gee whiz, will the world go on?

She worries that “[t]he willingness of the American public to even listen to the protesters’ message has surely diminished.” Poor baby! I can’t imagine why the world isn’t fixated on her cause.

The attitude of these protesters is, to say the least, disturbing. They expressed “anger at TV networks for perceived Arab-baiting” and asked, “‘[H]ave the hawks already started their dubious offensive?’” Dubious offensive? Hawks? How about defending our country and citizens from the type of people who condone this? As for Arab-baiting, I think that we needed to see the crowds of Palestinians cheering in the streets. We need to see who our enemies are. Which brings me to the most offensive statement, the message that “praised the bombing of the Pentagon.”

When I saw a man in a photo holding a sign saying, “The US is the greatest purveyor of violence in the world” after all this happened, I was filled with disgust. I don’t know if Martin Luther King Jr. actually said this, but if he did, we should rescind his holiday.

The self-absorption of these people is beyond belief. Petrie should feel ashamed of herself, not as an American, but as a human being.

Adams Morgan