Reflections... September 11th, 2001
I still often sit around on ordinary, uncelebrated evenings under fading twilight and think about that horrific day of enemy attack. There's no exterior lights out there... just you and the silhouettes of treetops and clouds above the black woods. This time of year, we are turning to cool, crisp breezes across changing leaves. The smell of fresh cut wood permeates my yard now. I have a little wooden bench out by my wood furnace that used to be my grandmothers. I repainted it to match our house trim and use it for a quiet hiatus and some thoughtful contemplation when time allows.
With a four year old that will grow up and try to live in our tomorrow, I think hard about what we as Americans should glean from the loss of our brothers and sisters on September 11th. It is a hard thing to present to an intelligent, yearning to learn, yet only-time-in-a-lifetime, truly innocent child.
This year I will endure the tragic redux without the intelligence and gentle, reassuring wisdom of my beautiful mother. Her absence gives me a keener insight to those stripped of their closest loved ones on that day, whether family or dear friend. Strangely, it is still far from anything equivalent, as my mother's eleven year cancer battle did give us morbid preparation and knowledge of the eventuality of circumstance. I gratefully got many chances for extended, passionate "good-bye" conversations... while most of the 11th victim's family and friends got absolutely nothing but cold, searing finality. No warnings, nary an inkling. Many of us have only comparatively feeble examples of what sudden, perdurable loss actually is.
I will watch the replays of video and the stories and the tears... because I should. I owe it to them. We all do. It's TEN YEARS LATER and we have the God given privilege of still living and breathing! The innocent victims were unmercifully extinguished with no choices or alternatives. Any person that can't grasp the basic mandate for respect and reverence is someone I don't want to talk to... and they don't want to talk to me, either. We coherent, respectful and grounded real Americans recall with a vivid, furrowed heart and a marker of bitter permanence.
I will dutifully relive it again, every year, and remember the hours of agony clearly. But I am hellbent on remaining crystal clear on what this meant. It should have been recognized as the most bold, face value declaration of a holy war with a cult of madmen we have ever witnessed in our country's history. It should have made us steely and wise, preparing for what we now know as their bared dedication to evil.
Our conduct, our examples and providing diligent, accurate historical accounts to our youth are more important now than ever before. With everything, including history, rapidly making the transition to digital-only event recording, the paperwork trail is becoming increasingly misty and therefore vulnerable to skewing, adulteration and revisionist rewriting.
We have diverged as Americans into a following herd of self-blinded, memory bereft, invertebrate lemmings and a sprinkling minority of rigid, caring, history laden Patriots. It has precipitated a boiling conflict beneath the crust of our population between those of us willing to accept the logical conclusion of such external aggression and those wishing to repaint it. Contrast, for example, the new directions we have gone in a post 9-11 world... Are these patterns of strength our forefathers might have responded with?
We haven't sealed our ultra-porous southern border, a proven door wide open to terrorist entry.
We have made it politically correct to relativize, rather than frankly confront, the murderous substance of Sharia/Radical Islam, while extolling the virtues of its' “cultural diversity”. (Hey! Let's build a mosque a few yards from where Islamists slaughtered our own!)
In tandem, we have squelched, belittled and labeled as 'intolerant' expressions of Christian faith. Believers are now “offensive” to non-believers... and not being offended has somehow become one of atheist's newest “rights”. (Ask a surviving American combat soldier if he was praying to Allah in the heat of battle.)
We have diminished and ignored the inherent strength in our Constitutional freedoms, instead repeatedly trying to “modernize” their current “evolved meanings”.
We over spend our economy into disaster, thereby further weakening the very pillars of our foundation. Do you think that because they hide in caves that they cannot deduce the vulnerability of such high profile presentation?
We close off our Gulf of Mexico and other domestic oil reserves to serving our own energy requirements while conditioning our people that we can magically replace fossil fuels overnight with such inefficient “alternatives” as wind, wave and solar sources. We convert our corn (what used to be food for our people and our livestock) into “alternative fuel” that produces 20% less heat energy per pound than gasoline. The huge oil rigs that once were in our Gulf of Mexico are now drilling in the Middle East and the Mediterranean. It costs cubic money to move them, and when they do, they do it for five and ten year contracts... They won't be back for a long time.
We increase the size of the government nipple and willingly place more and more of our population on it every day. Remember, extension of unemployment benefits is one of the best job creators there is. (If Nancy said it, it must be true... after all, I saw it on TV.)
We accept the presence of a cult of people who are at the very least publicly silent about condemning acts of terror, who commit family “honor killings” on our own soil and preach hatred of the very America they reside within in the mosques that we politically sterilize and permit. No other country in the world would allow a confirmed following of the enemy within their own gates... but we do. Yet, “profiling” is stubbornly exempt from our “security” measures.
So... perhaps you think that none of this has much to do with the occurrence, the memories, the horror and the victims of September 11th, 2001? Well, I guess I would adamantly disagree. We are creating the conditions for a subsequent attack that will make the atrocity of ten years ago comparatively small.
We have the lessons of how September 11th happened... it was complacency, unpreparedness and liberally spread false, soothing ignorance. We have the real memories, as vivid and bloody as they truly are. We have today and the decisions that will become tomorrow.
The decisions we have made, and those we have allowed to be made, are not indicative of a people who have learned from or recognized the advancing enemy. Yes, we've gone ten years without an attack, and we are a people acting as if it can't happen anymore. Just as Al Qaeda relentlessly came back after their “failed” attempt on the World Trade Center in 1993, they will never give up with committed efforts to create a sequel.
A confrontation and observance of reality would be the most fitting manner to honor those 3000 lost souls effectively. Will America ever regain its' roots of our forefathers consciousness?