The aftermath of 9/11 could be viewed as far worse than the event itself: we're far more divided now than even before the Towers went down. Even for those of us who try out best to overlook the differences & see the core of a person, it's hard in the face of such daily vitriol. We are driven to extremes thanks to a highly-saturated media cycle where politicians, so-called analysts (critics), self-appointed spokespersons and demographically type-casted citizens scream at the top of their lungs to say something divisive.
Sadly, after we take a moment to either observe or even intentionally ignore the chatter about what happened nine years ago (or for those who always forget 2/26/1993), we're going to return to our new normal: anger, resentment, increased cynicism, heavy-handed snark, unfocused rage, pain, misfortune.... hate.
Yet, it doesn't have to be this way.
This isn't a post asking you to give everyone in the world a Coke (or Pepsi or enhanced water) and a smile. Yet, this is a post that's asking us to take a step back to not only observe and remember, but to think.
On what is officially recognized as Patriot Day, protests will envelope the site along Liberty Street, mostly in response to the controversial mosque/cultural center that need not be mentioned further. As we get riled up about what may appear to be someone else’s own anger, we should ask ourselves what we can do individually to change this 'normal'.
Because no government, organized religion, business, educational institution or other entity can tell us to or even demand that we be better.
WE have to tell ourselves how to be better.
Then, we have to do it.
Oh, and don't ever forget Shanksville, PA.