I will speak my hard honest opinion on this 10th anniversary. An evil man at the bottom of his watery grave is rolling over victorious today. We are fighting terrorism, racism, extremism, injustice and inequality and in the same breath we slowly become that thing which we abhor. We are struggling through loss of life, homelessness, poverty, weakening education, cracking infrastructure, and crumbling moral, yet our leaders are more polarized, pointing more fingers and unwilling to compromise in order to bring us out of this turmoil. Love is Lost. “United We Stand” is a forgotten sentiment and in its place is a nation divided against itself.
In the weeks and months following September the Eleventh we stood arm in arm in solidarity. We held hands and cared for our American neighbor. For we had all lost. We were all forever changed. But we vowed we would not let the enemy win. We would hold strong as One. One country. One people. One testament of strength in the face of anyone who would do us harm. Do you remember that feeling of loss and heartbreak for all 300 million of us at once? And the feeling that followed when we raised the flag out of the ashes and onto our rooftops, overpasses and car windows? We had a moment in time where we could look at a stranger and know that our differences didn’t matter because we were in this together.
But something happened. And like lemurs we all jumped off the cliff together into a senseless void. We lost our way. Lost our souls. And hardened our hearts and slowly allowed the enemy to win. What have we done to this great nation? How in the world can we pull ourselves up from this darkness? Hope will not be found in the actions of our leaders, our Congressmen, our CEOs, our Generals, or the petty thief willing to take the last nickel of our American Pride. No change will be found in those great hypocritical voices you are waiting to speak up for you! This is not somebody else’s mess to walk past and leave for another generation.
Patriotism comes from inside. It rests on your shoulders; you carry the burden on your back to make this change. It is what we choose as citizens to do differently today that will determine if we can stand united tomorrow. Will you put racism and judgment aside? Will you get off your soapbox of righteousness and be humbled? Will you reach out to your neighbor and help raise the barn? Will you put the anger aside long enough to make your voice of encouragement heard? Will you stop believing the hype and trust in your heart? Will you love your country? Do not ignore the opportunity. When we all make the step together, it is louder than any bomb. And only then when we begin to care enough and find compassion again will we turn this story around, honor to the sacrifices made on that fateful day and give it the grande finale it deserves.