Saturday, September 10, 2011
Ten Years After
Last year, I wrote simply and honestly about what I remember. And, yes, in doing so I was making a characteristically sardonic observation on the miserable state of un-civil discourse that paints much of American politics and the so-called news.
This year, I want to be more direct.
I want to be less cynical and, perhaps, a bit more radical.
I want to ask everyone I know to dig deep into your memories of that day and the weeks that followed and remember just exactly how you felt about other Americans, regardless of their race, religion, or politics.
Can you do that?
When I think back to that day and to the days that followed, one image rises in my consciousness more than any other. Not the moment of impact. Not the plumes of smoke filling the sky. Not even the mangled steel and rubble. It is the sky above us all, blue and cloudless. Limitless, endless blue sky, unmarked by clouds or contrails, a powerful symbol of hope and possibility.
For a while, under that sky, we Americans showed the world and ourselves that we were made of better stuff. We came together as a nation to repair and to comfort, to salvage and to rebuild. Those weeks following 9/11/2001 may well have been our finest hours, the best America we could ever be, if only because we stopped fighting amongst ourselves over petty, political differences and focused our attention on getting the right things done.
Can you remember that?
If you need a reminder, take a moment to watch President Obama's Weekly Address "Coming Together a One Nation to Remember."
Now, can we come together as one nation again to get the right things done? Isn't that really the best thing we can do to honor those who died and those who served?