Letter: Think this through
October 3, 2001
My fellow Americans, I share in the horror, grief and outrage of the families and all of the people who have been affected by the recent terrorist attacks. I hope and pray that in the wake of these events that we as a people do not put on the blinders that have contributed to these events in the first place.
Although these attacks were much larger in scale and the number of casualties and dollars in property damage, the act itself is not much different than a pair of 14-year-old students taking bombs and guns to school and killing class mates, or Americans making bombs of fertilizer and fuel oil and destroying a federal building in Oklahoma City. Should we “carpet bomb” Denver and Littleton, Colo. to wipe out any friends or supporters of these “terrorists”?
I have seen many special ‘Investigative reports” produced by 60 minutes, Dateline and other TV shows that have shown with hidden cameras the lax security at airports and how easy it is for someone to gain access to aircraft and commit an act of terrorism. The greed of corporate America and the lust for profits and indeed the arrogance of our leadership make our system an accomplice to these acts just as much as the people behind the perpetrators. We have allowed this to happen through our own neglect!
When the airline industry hires untrained, under-paid workers with no experience in law enforcement and/or security issues to man the security check points at our airports, and airlines are given a relatively small fine for infractions and lapses in security (which they pay since it is much cheaper to pay the fines than it is to correct the problems) aren’t they and the government that allows this to happen in some way responsible for this tragedy also?
Before we target our grief and aggressions and desire for revenge against Afghanistan (or other middle east countries) and possibly bring pain and destruction upon many innocents that have no involvement or responsibility for these attacks, whose only crime is living in a impoverished country, and who do not have the resources to stand up against an oppressive government who may be harboring or giving refuge to the criminals who may be involved in these atrocities, we need to find out who may be involved in planning and implementing these attacks and bring them to justice. But not at the expense of possibly thousands of more innocent people.
Humans are by nature a violent species. There are among us a few who are more violent and have an insatiable greed and lust for power. These people are not just in third-world countries surrounded by followers who are blinded by the propaganda and rhetoric of their charismatic “leaders.” They are in our corporate boardrooms, leaders with little or no regard for the consequences or people affected by their actions, just the desire to accumulate more wealth and power.
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I am proud to be an American. I feel very lucky and indeed privileged to have been born in a country where freedom and prosperity abound. I am, however, saddened that it takes a tragedy such as this to bring people together to support their fellow man. I pray that we can indeed learn from these events and not perpetuate the hatred and lust that precipitated this tragedy and come together as a people to change the system and circumstances that allow tragedies like this to occur.
We need to look at ourselves, examine our priorities and work together to make the world a better place, not only for ourselves but also for our children, for they are our future. This starts with each of us supporting our communities. How about going to church? Supporting programs for our youth? How about love, understanding and compassion for our fellow man?
We are Americans, united, one nation under God, with liberty and justice for all!