9/11 Perspective: How We Got Here From There
9/11 Perspective: How We Got Here From There
9/11. I still remember that day. When, as a loud-mouth jokester with not much of a purpose besides talking and keeping the workforce entertained between songs was at a loss for words. Something in me snapped.
It was on that day that I knew everything I thought I believed in was my past. I listened to my dad break down into tears over a phone call across the country. I knew that many have lost so much more than I have on that day…and that the fight was far from over.
Seventeen years ago, the focus for most Americans was how we were going to prevent this from happening on our soil ever again. We rallied behind our troops who were sent into harms way, we supported their families who endured long deployments, missed the opportunity to be families and suffered from the stress of a missing family member on the other side of the world and in danger. We’ve had service members come home to their families and they were not the same as when they left. We supported our fire and rescue workers who also had their share of stress and PTSD when all was said and done. We were tolerant of law enforcement officers who were tasked with extra vigilance the days following the events. We actually thanked our flight crew for getting us to our destination safely. We held doors, we said please and thank you and we hugged more often. We had love for our fellow Americans despite political philosophies. We were proud to be part of the greatest nation on earth.
We had humility.
Fast-forward 17 years. The “resistance”, as some Americans call it, has pretty much become less about resisting who is sitting in the White House to resisting certain American ideologies. It is wrong to call The White House, The White House. It is wrong to be a Capitalist, wrong to be a Christian, wrong to be a self-identified and proud heterosexual of assigned gender at birth. It is wrong to be against abortion as a form of birth control, wrong to dress your child in gender-assigned clothing or allow them to play with toys that are specific to their gender. It is sexist to grow a beard if you’re a man (but if you’re a woman, it’s commendable in some circles.) Men are not men and women are not women…science and biology is being rewritten as is the English language. Every bloody thing is a microagression that leaves an individual “triggered”. We have meetings at our workplaces about this! We have Social media-Twitter, Facebook, Instagram—all where people are free to spout their opinions and berate others who do not agree with them from the comfort of their own homes in their Snuggies. They post perfect pictures of themselves with perfect filters while drinking soy lattes and eating crepes in these Snuggies. These bullying adults feel somehow entitled to say things online to people they would never even dream to say to someone to their face. These adults behaving badly pass this on to their children who have an overwhelming self-inflated opinion of themselves (and we wonder why) and do the same to their peers who do not go along with their mob mentality. As a result, parenting has run amuck. Between parents who simply don’t care and those who are just too tired who roll over and play dead with their difficult children, we have thugs in schools being bullies that we cannot punish for fear of “profiling”, kids snapping and shooting up their schools andh an increased rate in suicide and depression. Young men and women in our universities were once told by their over-doting parents who denied them any discipline and education in common sense are angry that nothing in this world is free. They are mad that they have to make sacrifices or actually work for something when they were given participation trophies every year at school. They are so angry about this injustice, so saddened, that people are opposed to funding their 6-year philosophy degrees and their birth control, they need cry rooms to cope with it all and if they can’t, they eat laundry detergent.
On 9/11, we, for once, were not narcissistic.
In the following years after 9/11/2001, we went from wanting to do everything to preserve the land we love to its gradual demise. We went to war, we lost friends, we lost loved ones and then had a President who clicked his heels and did dance moves for all to see when “he” got the bad guy. We were told by the very same man that we needed to have humility while he did his jig, that we needed to be “less nationalistic” and think with a “world view” and maybe people in other countries would think we suck a little less. All of a sudden, we were apologizing for being Americans and questioning our brutal history as a nation. College professors tried to rewrite it, reteach it. “Activists” started burning it, citing it as the reason for the deep division of the rich and poor and the racial divide in our country. The highly-paid, sheltered elite in gated mansions have been given a platform to speak to the masses and even though they are “embarrassed” for us, the lowly, uneducated “commoners”. Yet, they refuse to leave this country that has made them millions, they refuse to part with the millions and equally distribute them to the unfortunate and refuse to take in those they say other Americans are so bigoted and close-minded towards. Cities have become large meccas for rich, influential people to preach their ideals of “social programs” to poor and middle class families and lining their pockets for these initiatives while these families see no benefit. Instead, they become increasingly dependent on entitlements-perpetuating the cycle of poverty and crime while corrupt local politicians stand at the helm. Social justice “warriors” occupy the streets to protest laws put into place to protect people and in the process, destroy property of hard-working Americans.
We, for once, stood tall.
Standing for something on September 12 of 2001 meant placing your hand on your heart and actually STANDING for our colors while standing for something in 2018 involves a spoiled, entitled athlete who has NEVER experienced hardship in his life, kneeling because he feels injustice. As a reward for his disrespect? A major corporation gives him an ad campaign and calls him “courageous”. Courage went from donning a uniform and storming a beach to sporting a pair of pig socks. Law enforcement officers who once received gratitude and free coffee now get turned away from establishments. Courage went from incredible women wowing people with their grit and wit and taking responsibility for their own actions to wearing pink pussy hats and uterus costumes and blaming men for, well, everything. Feminists have gone done away with Rosie the Riveter and have become a whiny bunch of crude hags in a contest to see who is the most grotesque of them all. On the flip side, courage went from getting hands dirty to skinny jeans, fanny packs, man buns, rompers and men being chastised for holding doors, picking up the check and (gasp!) owning guns. Men have been beaten up, demoralized and made to feel inferior for masculine tendencies. The era of civil discourse has gone by the wayside. Friends and family members do not talk to other friends and family members across the great divide. Those relationships have crumbled and it is sad to see how quickly they have eroded away.
For to win one hundred victories in one hundred battles is not the acme of skill. To subdue the enemy without fighting is the acme of skill. Hence to fight and conquer in all your battles is not supreme excellence; supreme excellence consists in breaking the enemy’s resistance without fighting.-Sun Tsu
There was no doubt on September 11, 2001 that we had an enemy who wanted very much to take us down, who hated every thing we stood for. While we waged war on our enemies, the true war is happening within and don’t think for a moment that our enemies are not pleased with this result. What American-hating country wouldn’t love the idea that we are spontaneously combusting from within? What American-hating country wouldn’t be satisfied with the self-loathing, the infighting and the division that has been created by our own people? No weapons of mass destruction, brute force, artillery or ordinance needed on their part. We’re eating our own. Cost-effective war strategy for them, right?
Some of us have taken a stand and some of us have forgotten what exactly we stand for. We need to wake up, America. Hatred is not subdued by hatred posing as “tolerance”. Bravery does not boast, is not smug and seldom gets an ad campaign. True heroes don’t want an ad campaign. True people of character see character and redeeming qualities in others despite political or religious affiliation. They have civil discourse and if they oppose one another’s views, they agree to disagree. It’s time for us to get in touch with our humanity again and understand the battle and the enemy is not within people but within principalities. This here is the challenge for all of us. After all, it took us 17 years to get into this mess. As Americans, I firmly believe we can fight our way out of this one, too.