Tuesday, September 11, 2012


On a day much like this one the day started like any other for New Yorkers and for the rest of the citizens of the United States and the world, it was in fact a Tuesday too. In just a moment the country went from calm to shocked, from peace to terror and at the end of that fateful day we lost so much more than two buildings and nearly three thousand lives we lost our innocence and perhaps our arrogance as well. In the aftermath of the attacks the country became united never mind what party you voted for, where you went to pray or what color your skin was, we were all Americans and we all mourned for our lost brethren and our loss of sanctuary.
But it didn’t end that day, it had just begun. Our men in uniform are continuing the fight against terror and we’re loosing our precious sons, daughters, wives, husbands, sisters and brothers in numbers that are always too many if the number is one, we’re also loosing in too great a number those selfless first responders and volunteers that are falling victim to illnesses in these years following the clean up of ground zero.
On this the eleventh anniversary let’s take a moment to reflect to remember but also to look forward, see not only evil around you but the beauty of cities, farmlands, mountains and oceans and of the hopeful faces of our sisters and brothers of not only fellow Americans but our family of the human race. Take a moment to do one act of kindness, say one kind word, do one kind deed, lend a hand, give a hug or just listen to someone in need.
We should never forget what brought us to this anniversary, but we should not let it makes us victims either, it should not dictate how we live or how we love. That is in our own hearts, it’s what makes us who we are, who we could be and who we want to be.

Here is the original poem written by Katherine Lee Bates an English professor at Wellesley College in 1893.
O beautiful for halcyon skies,
For amber waves of grain,
For purple mountain majesties
Above the enameled plain!
America! America!
God shed His grace on thee,
Till souls wax fair as earth and air
And music-hearted sea!
O beautiful for pilgrim feet
Whose stern, impassioned stress
A thoroughfare for freedom beat
Across the wilderness!
America! America!
God shed His grace on thee
Till paths be wrought through wilds of thought
By pilgrim foot and knee!
O beautiful for glory-tale
Of liberating strife,
When once or twice, for man's avail,
Men lavished precious life!
America! America!
God shed His grace on thee
Till selfish gain no longer stain,
The banner of the free!
O beautiful for patriot dream
That sees beyond the years
Thine alabaster cities gleam
Undimmed by human tears!
America! America!
God shed His grace on thee
Till nobler men keep once again
Thy whiter jubilee!


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