September 15th, 2001, 07:55 AM
Found this on another forum...I think it was written by Leonard Pitts of the Miami Herald, it says a lot - judi
We'll go forward from this moment
In this moment of airless shock when hot tears sting
disbelieving eyes, the only thing I can find to say,
the only words that seem to fit, must be addressed to
the unknown author of this suffering.
You monster. You beast. You unspeakable b*a*s*t*a*r*d.
What lesson did you hope to teach us by your coward's
attack on our World Trade Center, our Pentagon, us?
What was it you hoped we would learn? Whatever it was,
please know that you failed.
Did you want us to respect your cause? You just damned
Did you want to make us fear? You just steeled our
Did you want to tear us apart? You just brought us
Let me tell you about my people. We are a vast and
quarrelsome family, a family rent by racial, social,
political and class division, but a family
nonetheless. We're frivolous, yes, capable of
expending tremendous emotional energy on pop cultural
minutiae -- a singer's revealing dress, a ball team's
misfortune, a cartoon mouse. We're wealthy, too,
spoiled by the ready availability of trinkets and
material goods, and maybe because of that, we walk
through life with a certain sense of blithe
entitlement. We are fundamentally decent, though --
peace-loving and compassionate. We struggle to know
the right thing and to do it. And we are, the
overwhelming majority of us, people of faith,
believers in a just and loving God.
Some people -- you, perhaps -- think that any or all
of this makes us weak. You're mistaken. We are not
weak. Indeed, we are strong in ways that cannot be
measured by arsenals.
Yes, we're in pain now. We are in mourning and we are
in shock. We're still grappling with the unreality of
the awful thing you did, still working to make
ourselves understand that this isn't a special effect
from some Hollywood blockbuster, isn't the plot
development from a Tom Clancy novel. Both in terms of
the awful scope of their ambition and the probable
final death toll, your attacks are likely to go down
as the worst acts of terrorism in the history of the
United States and, probably, the history of the world.
You've bloodied us as we have never been bloodied
But there's a gulf of difference between making us
bloody and making us fall. This is the lesson Japan
was taught to its bitter sorrow the last time anyone
hit us this hard, the last time anyone brought us such
abrupt and monumental pain. When roused, we are
righteous in our outrage, terrible in our force. When
provoked by this level of barbarism, we will bear any
suffering, pay any cost, go to any length, in the
pursuit of justice.
I tell you this without fear of contradiction. I know
my people, as you, I think, do not. What I know
reassures me. It also causes me to tremble with dread
of the future.
In the days to come, there will be recrimination and
accusation, fingers pointing to determine whose
failure allowed this to happen and what can be done to
prevent it from happening again. There will be
heightened security, misguided talk of revoking basic
freedoms. We'll go forward from this moment sobered,
chastened, sad. But determined, too. Unimaginably
THE STEEL IN US
You see, the steel in us is not always readily
apparent. That aspect of our character is seldom
understood by people who don't know us well. On this
day, the family's bickering is put on hold.
As Americans we will weep, as Americans we will mourn,
and as Americans, we will rise in defense of all that
So I ask again: What was it you hoped to teach us? It
occurs to me that maybe you just wanted us to know the
depths of your hatred. If that's the case, consider
the message received. And take this message in
exchange: You don't know my people. You don't know
what we're capable of. You don't know what you just
But you're about to learn.
[This message has been edited by GrannieJudi (edited September 15, 2001).]