08 September 2011

Always Remember, Never Forget

September 11, 2001 attacks in New York City: V...Image via WikipediaPresident Franklin D. Roosevelt proclaimed 7 December 1941 as "a day which will live in infamy."  It's on the calendars - if you get the right calendar - as "Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day."  Seventy years after the fact, and we still remember when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor.  We tell our children of what happened on that fateful day and what consequences it had for us as a country.

There's another day that will live in infamy - 11 September 2001.  It was on this day that terrorists hijacked four airplanes and crashed them into the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York City, the Pentagon and a field in Pennsylvania.  That last plane - United flight 93 - was meant for the U.S. Capitol Building.  However, brave, terrified passengers fought back and gave their lives to save unknown hundreds.  This is true heroism.  Thousands were killed on 9/11, and hundreds of others remain unidentified.

The president of the United States wants to make the tenth anniversary of this tragedy a day of service, asserting that we should move forward, that remembering 9/11 is "clinging to the past."  Now I have nothing against serving others, whether in my own community or in other parts of the world.  In fact, I believe service should be a regular part of our lives.  I do, however, have something against trying to block these events out of our minds.  Let's review what happened.  Extremist Muslims (those who are dangerously faithful to their faith) hijacked planes in our country filled with innocent people and used those planes to essentially fire bomb buildings where there were thousands of other innocent people.  These people were children.  Mothers.  Fathers.  Grandparents.  Sons.  Daughters.  Friends.  Beloved aunts and spoiling uncles.  Think for a moment of all the people who love you, those who would be sad if you died suddenly.  Now multiply that number by about 3,000.  That's how many lives were indelibly changed that day.  This doesn't include the bystanders and the rescue workers.  Nor does this include you or me.
Pentagon Building, Washington D.C. ~ The space circled in white is where a friend's office was.  He was called out to a last-minute meeting earlier in the morning.
Do you remember what it was like to fly before 9/11?  Do you remember going into government buildings or hospitals without having to pass through metal detectors?  Do you remember not having to have your bags searched when you went to concerts, theme parks or sporting events?  I do, but that memory is getting distant and faint.

ALWAYS remember.  NEVER forget.  Don't dishonor those who died for another group's jihad by NOT remembering the events of September 11th, ten years ago.  Serve others every day; remember these Americans at least once a year.
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