Today marks the 7th year anniversary of the September 11 attacks on our country. In some ways, it seems that we are light years away from that horrific day. I look at our country and its’ citizens and I don’t see any of the patriotism we all felt during that time. I don’t see us pulling together and helping each other. It seems that we fell right back into the isolated, self-protecting, self-centered lives we were leading prior to that day. Perhaps that’s the only way we know how to survive right now, but I hope we change. We need to change. We need to come together as one. We need to represent this great country with honor. We need to erase the divisiveness that is so prevalent. Sure, we can disagree on issues and policies. We are certainly entitled to our own opinions, but we need to be more respectful of each other while doing it. There is no need to tear each other down just because we disagree. There is no need to get ugly. People are watching us. Other countries are watching us. Possible future allies are watching us. Those in countries where we are working to help establish a democratic society are watching us…and what are they seeing? Are they going to be so inclined to build that democratic society if they see ours so unhinged? Most importantly, our children are watching us. What example are we setting for them? What are they learning? Our children are our most precious resource for they are the future leaders of this great country. What are we showing them today? That it’s ok to shout obscenities at each other? To be downright mean to each other? To tear each other down by attacking someones very soul? I worry every day about my niece and nephews, and the future they will inherit and I ask myself….is our country moving forward or is it falling behind?
It is odd, in some respect, how we use today September 11 to reflect on thoughts such as these and to question where we are, where we’re going and how we’re getting there. But maybe that is why we have September 11. Maybe the horrible losses we suffered that day happened because we needed such a reminder. Maybe we needed that experience to remind us of the gift of life. Maybe we needed this annual reminder to get us to stop and reflect if only for one day. To stop and evaluate how we’re doing. To stop and give thanks for our lives, for our neighbors, for our children, for our country. To stop and regroup. To pull together again. To remember not to let those who died that day to have died in vain. To stop and remember that our country is great and that we, the citizens of the United States of America need to be united. To remember that each one of us is a gift to be treated with kindness and respect.
I don’t understand how the universe works or how God’s hand directs our experiences, and I question it all by asking why we had to go through such a catastrophic event. I don’t have answers. Just questions. And some reflections that may give someone else food for thought.