Sunday, September 11, 2005

Four Years Later

Sunny Hi 109 Lo 80 for Baghdad, Iraq
Sunny Hi 89 Lo 66 for Northern Kentucky, USA

Song of the week: Times Like These, Foo Fighters

"it's times like these you learn to live again
it's times like these you give and give again
it's times like these you learn to love again
it's times like these time and time again"
-Foo Fighters

It's been four years since the events that took place on September 11, 2001. The following is something I wrote nearly a year ago when I joined an organization to be more active in my community, to be vigilant, to not be a whiner or a complainer, to do my part and stand up for what I believe in and to always do what is right.

I can't really add anything new. I've changed it somewhat to meet the needs of this blog, but it IS in my voice. It was originally read aloud and with the passion of someone that loves this country that loves this life. There will be others that will write much more eloquently. There will be plenty written on comparisons to 9/11 and Hurricane Katrina and our lack of preparedness. There will be a lot of gnashing of teeth and ongoing name calling and finger pointing. The only comparison that can be made as I see it is that we didn't ask for the attack on 9/11 (or any of the other attacks for that matter) and we didn't ask for a hurricane to "attack" us on 8/29. The comparison comes with the intestinal fortitude of the American people. The "can do" spirit that resides in this country will overcome this and any obstacles we may face in the future...

My name is Cathy. I’ve lived in Burlington nearly 9 years. I’ve been married to Michael for over 14 years. We have a great life together- we own our home, we pay taxes, and we both work full time jobs. We have too many cats- but I wouldn’t give any of them up.

I can’t recall a time in my life when being an American..., being proud that I was part of a family full of Marines, being politically opinionated wasn’t part of my life. Some of my earliest childhood memories revolve around my grandfather calling Walter Cronkite all sorts of unflattering but accurate names… I remember watching the footage on the evening news of the Vietnam War and having to leave the room when a tape cassette came in the mail from my Uncle Steve—listening to an account about the awful realities of war from a 19 year old wasn’t something a 5 year old needed to hear. One of the big mantras of my childhood was “GET US OUT OF THE UN NOW!”

With exception to a couple of misguided years while in college, I have been a conservative. The first election that I was old enough to vote in was to re-elect President Reagan to his 2nd term and I did cast my vote enthusiastically.

On September 11, I was at work—my first day back from vacation—a Tuesday. I received a phone call from a dear friend--- “Hey, have you heard the news? A B-25 or some plane has crashed into the Empire State Building. I poopooed him—I was in a fowl mood… after all, it was Tuesday, and I had just gotten back from vacation, so work had piled up… “Yeah yea right, whatever, ok, Rob-- gotta go bye see ya.” I can’t recall if Rob called me back, but I somehow found out—it wasn’t a B-25 into the Empire State Building—it was a Jet airliner into the World Trade Center…. Oh God.....—then another jet flew in to the 2nd tower... and then we all knew........ We weren’t safe and someone wanted us all dead. Like everyone, I was stunned, frightened, moved to tears over the loss of human life, overwhelmed by stories of courage. The shock turned to anger-- In Burlington, the skies were silent for a few days… being so close to the airport… it was eerie… I remember seeing a couple of jet fighters. Then President Bush spoke to us. He told us---he PROMISED us, these murderers- these terrorists would be caught. I believed him and still do. Like countless others, we put our flag at half staff; I became a bigger talk radio junkie. I found it critical to become active—I needed to do something to show support for our President and for our military. The anti-war protesters were already out there before the war began and Michael and I wanted to give voice to the numbers that supported our troops, that supported their Commander in Chief. Rallies were proposed and we went… as close as Florence as far away as Washington D.C. Our numbers mattered- it was good to be around people with similar views. It’s easy to be sucked into the vortex of America sucks and blame America first….

Pre-election 2004. Going to the rallies was a great experience- I met some wonderful folks, but it still did not ease that need for wanting to make a difference. Griping and moaning and complaining simply were not resolving any of the issues we were facing as Americans. The thought of having someone like John Kerry as president was more than disconcerting. Then in October, a friend, Jeff, emailed us about putting a “club” together for conservative thought… We conservatives are out there and I think there are a lot of us. But we are working, we are paying taxes and just trying to make it to the next paycheck hoping to sock a little away for retirement. The excuses started going through my mind…. I’m too busy; I’m tired after work… Only an unemployed liberal from Seattle has time to protest on a weekday at the Republican Convention… NO excuses --- we are going to do this and it’s going to be great!

We are going to make sure that our Representatives know where we stand and if they do not represent us--- we will vote for someone else who WILL represent us. We are going to write letters to editors—our voices will be heard! I feel I am giving back to my grandparents, my mom and I am doing my part to make sure that we give my nieces and nephews a fair shot at life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

To the family and friends of those lost on 9/11, we will never forget.

To our fighting men and women in the military, thank you, thank you for your service.

And as for me, I will remain viligant, I will keep doing my part and I will never forget...

"Officers and men and women of the corps, ladies and gentlemen, I came here today to pay homage to the heroes of Lebanon and Grenada. We grieve along with the families of these brave, proud Americans who have given their lives for their country and for the preservation of peace.
I have just met with the families of many of those who were killed. I think all Americans would cradle them in our arms if we could. We share their sorrow. I want all of you who lost loved ones and friends to know that the thoughts and prayers of this nation are with you.
If this country is to remain a force for good in the world, we'll face times like these, times of sadness and loss. Your fellow citizens know and appreciate that marines and their families are carrying a heavy burden.
America seeks no new territory, nor do we wish to dominate others. We commit our resources and risk the lives of those in our Armed Forces to rescue others from bloodshed and turmoil and to prevent humankind from drowning in a sea of tyranny..."
-Ronald Reagan

Remarks to Marines at Cherry Point, North Carolina, on the United States Casualties in Lebanon and Grenada
Cherry Point, North Carolina

I urge you to visit all the links listed below... the first few are tributes. Visit Take Back the Memorial...don't let them turn this into a mockery.The last link is to bring to light to the Flight 93 Memorial. Calling it a disappointment is an understatement... however Rob and Michelle have it covered.

GCS Distributing Tribute

9/11 Remembered

9/11 Pentagon

9/11 America Attacked

St. Paul's Chapel

"...We'll be deliberate, yet time is not on our side. I will not wait on events, while dangers gather. I will not stand by, as peril draws closer and closer. The United States of America will not permit the world's most dangerous regimes to threaten us with the world's most destructive weapons.
Our war on terror is well begun, but it is only begun. This campaign may not be finished on our watch -- yet it must be and it will be waged on our watch.
We can't stop short. If we stop now -- leaving terror camps intact and terror states unchecked -- our sense of security would be false and temporary. History has called America and our allies to action, and it is both our responsibility and our privilege to fight freedom's fight..."

-President George W. Bush
State of the Union
29 January, 2002

So that we never forget...Take Back the Memorial

Thank you Cap'n Bob.

Rob reports The Hijacking Continues

"The dogmas of the quiet past are inadequate to the stormy present. The occasion is piled high with difficulty, and we must rise with the occasion. As our case is new, so we must think anew, and act anew. We must disenthrall ourselves, and then we shall save our country."
-Abraham Lincoln
Annual Message to Congress
1 December, 1862


Wonder Woman said...

You're the best, Cathy! Thank you for this awesome Foo-Fighting wisdom.

otimaster said...

God bless America

Your friend


GeorgeWalker said...

"It was here in 2001 in lower Manhattan that President George W. Bush stood amid the fallen towers of the World Trade Center and said to the barbaric terrorists who attacked us, "They will hear from us."

They have heard from us!

Rudy Giuliani.

I will never forget.
God bless America.

chrys said...

You DO think like me! Post fits today well - Thanks!

Jedi Master Rob said...

It's so odd to hear a piece of my experience echoed in yours. Makes it all that more real. Sometimes I still have to pause and ask myself if this really did happen. In the hours that followed my phone call to you that day I thought that the world was ending. But it didn't.

Great post. Thanks.