Tuesday, September 3, 2013

An E-Mail About 9/11

This is a blog post I wrote in 2008 during Barrack Obama's election. It's a reflection on a message I received right after 9/11. It's interesting to look back at what I wrote. because I'm not sure I feel now the way I did back then, when 9/11 and George Bush's disastrous Presidency were fresher in the memory.

At a time when it looks like Obama is getting ready to take the U.S. to war yet again in the name of "peace" and "security," the overwhelming emotions from the event that Changed Everything 12 years ago are gone. The e-mail below is a reminder of a time when the rest of the world was once, if only briefly, on our side.

I took some time to cast an early vote in the Presidential election. It took almost 2 hours to complete, but I felt really good afterwards.

I always fill with a great deal of pride on Election Day. I consider myself incredibly fortunate that I live in a country whose citizens have the right - not the privilege, not the gift - to decide who their leaders will be.

And I think this election is more important than others, maybe the most important in my lifetime. As I see it, America is at a crossroads, and it can choose to continue on its current course or make a major break from the way things are and start reaching for what can be.

I got this e-mail several years ago, right after terrorists attacked the United States on September 11, 2001. I don't know who wrote it, but many of the thoughts expressed are still relevant today:

"Today, the United States has faced the most serious attack ever on its soil; we have faced the greatest loss of life within our borders and we have faced the most serious attack on our most basic philosophy of life and government in our country's short history.

But even in the shadow of this incredible evil we must reflect on the spirit of freedom and individual accountability and responsibility that has shaped our country from the beginning.

We are a nation of free men and women who have inherited a birthright of self-determination and self-reliance and we may be bent by this horrific attack on our sense of self and safety but our spirits will not be broken and our bodies, though bruised and burned will not yield to the despair of fear but we will find the fire of liberty and the hard steel of determination in our hearts and we will come together and defeat the fear that threatens our Nation and our souls.

I know in my heart that there were real heroes on UAL flight 93. I know that the only reason that airplane crashed in a field in Pennsylvania and not on our Capitol or on the White House is that there were real and genuine heroes onboard and that they gave their lives to save the lives of those in the Capitol or White House.

Think about that folks there are superheros among us and they're just like us. But unlike most of us, they were in a position to act and they acted and they probably saved untold lives and possibly the integrity of the U.S. government.

We are a Nation of Heroes.

We will not be broken.

We are brothers and sisters, standing together and standing firm in the face of fear.

We are Americans.

Goodnight, folks. Be well and rest up tonight, for we face a fight for our way of life like we haven't seen since 1941.

Be well, and do good work.

This is America. We are Americans. God bless America."

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