Thursday, September 11, 2008

Remembering and Respecting 9/11

Seven years ago, we were all stunned by the events of this day. The tragedy, the heroism, the national unity and purpose that followed, must never be forgotten.

For months following the 2001 tragedy, as we looked back at our pre-9/11 world, it's safe to say we were collectively embarassed by what we saw in light of our new perspective. As the terrorist attack was being conceived and planned in our own country, our headlines that summer were consumed with shark attacks, the Chandra Levy scandal, and other relatively trivial stories. How silly we looked. How unprepared, and unfocused, and distracted, from the true challenges of our world.

Sadly, as we paused to remember 9/11 today, it brought that same feeling about the prior days we have seen. Up until today, the talk of this week has been about "lipstick-gate." Feigned offense and personal charges back and forth. Political ads that stretch the truth and dwell on the trivial. And a media falling over itself to cover and analyze every wrinkle and aspect of the trivial.

Even as we face all the challenges of this world and economy, and we have a presidential race that should be the perfect vehicle to debate and address these issues, we seem to be rapidly reverting back to the summer 2001 focus on the small.

Today, due to 9/11, the national campaigns agreed to take a "timeout" from the week's nonsense to focus on the deeper issues in our country. Thankfully, it became a day to be serious, to be thoughtful, to think about a broader and unified national purpose.

Is it too much to ask that this timeout last at least through the election, and ideally beyond?

Taking the timeout for just one day misses the entire point.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Do think the US response to 9/11 has been effective?

If not, what do you think the proper response to 9/11 should have been?


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