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Monday, September 10, 2012

9/11 What Has Changed?

  Tomorrow, we remember September 11, 2001. This year, it falls eleven years to the day exactly. Like my parent's generation, who knew exactly where they were and what they were doing when John Kennedy was shot, my generation remembers where they were and what they were doing that warm sunny morning, when the world was changed forever.
  But really, what is different? What has changed since that terrible day? One could point to the biggest thing, Osama Bin Laden has gone on to his just rewards. I am willing to bet it does not include paradise or virgins. Most of Al Quaida's top henchmen are either dead or used to life in the Caribbean in Cuba at Gitmo.
  These are fantastic accomplishments, and we have the finest people in the world, the U.S. Military to thank. They continue to keep our nation safe in the face of an enemy that will never cease to give up on conquering the United States, and ultimately, western civilization.
  Everyday life has changed in ways we might not have foreseen a decade ago. Airline passengers are subjected to invasive searches and scans. A process that many experts in the security industry believe could be done a lot better had we just made a call to the Head of Security at El Al Airlines.
  Mosques seemed to have popped up in more places since 2001. It is a tough line to balance for a lot of Americans. The very founding of our nation was the result of different people coming from different lands, with different customs, all in search of a better life in America. We try so hard to be welcoming to Muslims who move into our neighborhoods. We want to treat them the way we ourselves would want to be treated. We weigh good intentions against natural feelings of wariness. Because even though they are innocent, they look like and share the same faith as the people who murdered 3000 Americans in one morning.
  Americans have changed as individuals. Something was taken from us that day. A sort of innocence, for lack of a better word. We were not prepared for the evil that was visited upon us, and it left a permanent scar.
  Eleven years later, we hope that we are much better prepared, for whatever people who wish us harm would do to us. Americans are a unique combination of strong will, stubbornness, resilience, and just plain hard-core.
  If the rest of the world has forgotten that, we should remind them.   

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