Reflections on 9/11

It is getting more and more difficult to write about 9/11. There is relatively little to say or write that has not already been said or written by others. Memories are somewhat jumbled among certain people. A great deal of time has certainly passed, and we have learned how to live with the hurt and the pain and the anger that stemmed from that awful day. The geopolitical consequences of the terrorist attacks continue to live with us, and we discuss those consequences just about every single day of the year. What else is there to write or talk about?

Love. That’s what.

The anger, the hurt, the pain will never fully recede. But when it recedes some more, I am convinced that it will be replaced by love. Love for those whom we lost. Love for those who were saved. Love for those who risked and gave their lives so that others may live. Love for all those who sought to unite a nation after lunatics sought to frighten and divide it.

As human beings, we are fallen creatures, which means–among other things–that we can be amazingly petty in so many of our dealings with others, and with the world in general. But despite the pure awfulness of the September 11 terrorist attacks, what we ought to remember are the many acts of love–great and small–that helped bring some semblance of healing to a wounded nation. We are not fully healed yet, to be sure. But we would be in much worse shape today without the love, caring and devotion showed by so many Americans–and so many around the world–to those in need and in pain.

As human beings, we can be petty. But we can also be noble. The response to September 11 proved as much. Let that be remembered long after we are gone.