Sunday, September 11, 2005
September 11 - Four Years Later
Last year I revisited my post regarding where I was on September 11, 2001. I looked it over again this year and I found I don't really have much to add to it. It has become part of history.
This year I decided to ask some of my fellow bloggers to post on how the events of that Tuesday morning have affected them. So far, I've received a post from Toni. I'll post links to others as they come in.
How did September 11 affect me? In many ways. I shared many of the same emotions as did my fellow countrymen that day. Shock. Sadness. Anger. Mourning. The events of that morning reminded me again what was really important to me. My family, my wife - the Ravishing Mrs. Cordeiro, and my young son.
The attacks of that day reminded me there is evil in the world and hiding from it - pretending it doesn't exist or wishing it away - is not an effective countermeasure. Evil must be opposed.
Today around the country, but especially in New York City, Washington, DC, and in a reclaimed coal mine in Pennsylvania, the heroes and victims of September 11 were remembered. Every name of the fallen was read by a friend or family member. It is all together fitting and proper this should be done every year. Personally I hope it continues.
I hope it continues in this fashion because popular culture has a very short memory. The popular memory little notes, nor long remembers much of anything. This phenomenon is good for maintaining optimism, but also runs the risk of forgetting those who made such optimism possible.
There is still a gaping hole in the heart of New York City. The veil of civility which covers the still raw emotions of that Tuesday in September is sometimes very thin. That is as it should be. It keeps those who continually call for "tolerance", "debate", and "moving on" from drowning out those who lost so much.
Many years ago, Billy Joel wrote a song entitled "Miami 2017 (Seen The Lights Go Out On Broadway)". It masterfully tells the fictional tale of the destruction of New York through the eyes of one who had long since moved to Florida. The last stanza of the song ends with this phrase:
You know those lights were bright on BroadwayI proudly consider myself one of that handful. Let us never forget the cause for which the fireman, cops, passengers, crew, and just plain old Americans going to work gave the last full measure of devotion.
But that was so many years ago...
There are not many who remember,
They say a handful still survive,
To tell the world about the way the lights went out
And keep the memory alive
Here endeth the lesson.