Friday, September 17, 2010

The Promises We Made - Remembering 9/11

There were two reactions that day in September - fear and anger. The fearful curled up and hid somewhere, hoping they would not be next. The angry stood up and did something, even if it was only to go outside and hang a flag out front of the house in defiance. I remember hanging my second flag (I already had one up), looking around the neighborhood in defiance and thinking, "Bring it on, wherever you are hiding. Here I stand!"

Maybe John Edwards was right. Maybe there are two Americas, but I doubt it was the two Americas he envisioned.  I think the two Americas are inhabited by the fearful and the brave. Like children on a playground, the fearful surrender and submit in hopes that the local bully won't hurt them much. The brave stand up to the bully and take a pounding if they have to, but they refuse to submit or surrender.  The cost of cowardice is far too high to pay and you will never cease to pay that price.  Its not just we who pay the cost either. It will be our children and our children's children who will pay the price if we are too fearful to stand up to the bullies of this world.

God placed us in this land to create a refuge for the bullied peoples of the world. He blessed it so that those refugees now live in the most prosperous, peaceful land in the world.  We didn't steal it our prosperity from others.  We dug deep, worked hard and held on against those same bullies and thugs who would follow us here to prey on us in this new land.  Our forefathers taught us to fight tyranny, to fight the bully boys of the world that our children might enjoy the blessings of liberty. We fought tyranny during the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812. We fought it again during the Civil War, and World War II. We owe our fathers and our children a toe to toe, knock down drag out fight like this world has never seen to preserve our sacred liberty in this generation.  There are those among us who would surrender our liberties to the very same thugs and bullies that generations of Americans fought so hard to free themselves from, mainly because they are too afraid to fight.  Dylan Thomas' famous poem says, "Do not go gentle into that good night. Rage against the dying of the light."  Good advice for this generation of Americans for we are in danger of slipping quietly into the long night of tyranny in exchange for bread and circuses and the illusion of peace and safety.

It is well on this anniversary to remember 9/11 and what can happen to us if we cease to be vigilant.  It is better that we remember the promises we made to ourselves and our posterity in the days after 9/11 when the horror of what was done to us was still fresh in our minds.

Tom King, Tyler, TX

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