I will be leaving at 6:30 AM this morning for meetings, a United Way not for profit community event and a multi-hour stint in a dental chair. It is just as well as I find it difficult to find much humor on September 11th and haven’t for seven years. It has become a time for me to reflect not only on the loss of life that took place with the terrorist downing of New York’s Twin Towers but also all of those who needlessly perish each year due to war, terror and natural disaster. In that spirit I am resending last years daily.
WASHINGTON (AFP) September 11, 2007
Six years after the September 11 attacks on the United States, most Americans view the plane hijackings that killed around 3,000 people as the most significant historical event of their lives, according to a poll released Monday.
September 11th is really hard for me, it is not just the pain I feel for the loss of so many lives in the Twin Towers on that fateful day six years ago, it is also the lives that have been lost since, both military and civilian. As I was thinking about writing something appropriate today I decided to look back at what I wrote years ago. I know the following will anger some of you and I am sure it did many when I first put it in the daily. I guess if I had to describe myself both then and now it would be that I am a Lugar Republican. I have always found Senator Dick Lugar to be the voice of reason. What follows is my heartfelt feelings of four years ago and I feel much the same way today, I just wish I had been wrong.
You do not have to respond. Each of us deals with 9/11 in our own way, I just wish we would have stuck to chasing the terrorists instead of getting bogged down in Iraq. Anyway here is what I wrote in the 9/11, 2003 Daily.
We will never be the same as a result of the tragic events of two years ago. I am saddened that it now appears that the legacy of those who lost their lives is one of continued tragic events. We have seen the erosion of our traditional liberties, a concern recognized by both conservatives and liberals alike. We see the continued effect of an airline industry struggling for survival due in part to so many people being afraid to fly. We have entered into a war that now appears can only be won by buying victory with our citizen’s tax dollars. It now appears that Iraq will be the breeding ground for a much larger threat to our future, a whole new army of terrorists. I am afraid we have been the victims of leadership that overstated our problems and grossly underestimated the price of their policies, and there is no way to turn back. I wish the events of 9-11 had not been used to rationalize what has been done in haste.
I wish the legacy of those who died was our turning to each other during these difficult times as we redirect our energy to the building of a better world for future generations. Just imagine what could have been done for education, healthcare, infrastructure repair, and more if we did not have to spend even more than we have already to stabilize Iraq. We might have seen a world where we built allies through a demonstration of our values, and not one where we have gone so far backwards that we now have to buy our friends.
It is not too late. Each of us can contribute to a living memorial to the 9/11 victims by helping to build the society in which they would have liked to have lived. Each of us, conservative, liberal, Christian, non-Christian, all of us, can in our small way build our personal memorial to the great loss we have experienced. If we do the victims of 9/11 will not have died in vain.
Think not forever of yourselves, O Chiefs, nor of your own generation. Think of continuing generations of our families, think of our grandchildren and of those yet unborn, whose faces are coming from beneath the ground.
T. S. Eliot
Stay well, do good work, and have fun.
Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
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The editor is somewhat senile.