today continues to grieve me.
not just because of the horrific events that I woke up to 19 years ago on September 11th and the sadness that still lingers, but because we still appear to have learned so little from that experience – an experience, that should be noted, happens elsewhere in the world and at times on a greater scale.
immediately after that tragic day the world outstretched its arms to us and our nation opened our hearts to each other. nearly 3000 people lost their lives that day and now as many people lose their lives every 3-5 days during this pandemic, yet people refuse to wear masks. where did the empathy go? in the years that have followed we’ve lost tens of thousands of our troops in ongoing wars that were a response to the tragic events of that day. and now, in the past 7 months we’ve lost nearly 200,000 people due to a pandemic, yet people refuse to wear masks and we have a preventable failure of leadership from the top. where did the empathy go?
it seemed on that day that our hearts opened and we relearned empathy and compassion. even in the horror of that tragedy, there was a glimmer of hope. 19 years later we are living through increased division, rage, hate and cruelty from the highest office, where we are also seeing white nationalism and conspiracy cults like QAnon embraced.
we say “never forget” yet it seems we have failed to remember, failed to remember our initial unity, our empathy, our compassion even amid the horror of that day.
caught up in fear, we give rise to selfish individualism, anger, aggression and hate. these feed division and opportunity for unscrupulous people in power.
if we truly want to honor the victims of 9/11, the lives lost since, and our humanity, we must reject ideologies of division, lies, aggression, cruelty and hate we are bearing witness to and perhaps participating in.
may truth, open-heartedness, empathy, and compassion prevail.