On September 11th, 2001 I was dealing with my own problems. My Grandmother had stabbing pains on her side for months, but the doctors couldnít figure out what the problem was. That morning I woke up early to call the doctorís office for some test results. The results where given to me by a nurse that worked there, nearly simultaneous to the second plane hitting the South tower of the World Trade Center. The news and the sight of the second tower caused me to gasp. I remember the nurse trying to tell me that the high white blood count didnít mean anything. We were scheduled to come in, and a couple hours later my Grandmother and I were sitting in the doctorís office. I was scared for the events that were unfolding in New York, and eager to find out that my Grandmother would be OK. Neither side of the story turned out to have a happy ending.
We have forgotten the events of that day. Some, those directly affected, still remember it vividly and canít forget. We responded as a nation for a brief moment to help one another, and forget our differences. But that opportunity was squandered by men who saw an opportunity to advance their own agenda. We were told that those who did this to us would pay. Itís has been eight years and the ones responsible have not paid at all.
Now we are mired in an economic disaster that could have seen the collapse of our democracy. The good times will come, the upturn will arrive, and we will forget once again. I wish that we could conjure up that feeling of community that we felt in the days after the cowardly attacks. We were of one mind, one heart, back then. Today we are fragmented, a nation of people only looking out for themselves. I donít want to think that 2001 was the beginning of the end of our great nation. But I fear that we took a wrong turn at that crucial moment because nearsighted men decided to turn us in that direction. It isnít too late, itís never ďtooĒ late.
My Grandmother didnít die until 2005, but I know that as far back as 2001 her cancer was started to grow. And just like it took several years for her to get sick, donít think that the events following that day could not felled us all these many years later. Iím saddened on this day. There isnít much I can do but write these words and lament at the direction we could have taken, that I could have taken, to change what followed September 11th, 2001.