The Palestine Herald, Palestine, Texas

September 11, 2008

Remember lives lost on 9-11

It’s been 2,557 days since terrorists flew a pair of hijacked airliners into the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York.

On that same day another plane flew into the Pentagon and another crashed into a Pennsylvania field after several passengers on the plane decided to take matters into their own hands and not let the terrorists have another victory that dark day.

In all, 2,973 people died that fateful day, their names forever linked with the worst atrocity ever committed upon the American people.

Inside the newsroom of the Herald-Press, just like everybody else in the country, our eyes were turned onto the television and we watched in horror as first one tower, and then another fell to the ground.

The next thoughts to come to mind were, “who’s next?”

If terrorists could strike there, they could hit us anywhere. Seven years later and we haven’t been hit again.

On Sept. 12, 2001, another terrorist strike on American soil seemed like an inevitability. While it still may be, credit must be given to the federal government and to our men and women in uniform along with local, state and federal law enforcement who have been vigilant in protecting the people.

There has been a lot of water under the bridge these seven years since that terrible day.

It would seem the country has gone back to normal. Politics is still as filthy a game as it ever was. The economy has been going through its normal hills and valleys.

Now it seems like the country is more attentive to the latest escapades of its many Hollywood starlets than they are the constant threats the country faces.

Whether we want to admit it or not, the president and government have kept us safe here at home, while our men and women in uniform take the fight to those who wish to do us harm.

Our safety has not come without great cost. To date we have lost more than 4,000 of our fighting men and women in Iraq, with another 500 lost in Afghanistan. A tall price to pay.

There have been other losses in this fight; the biggest loss being to the Constitution and its guarantees to the people of the U.S. It seems safety is now a bigger concern than freedom — a consequence we will have to face at a future date.

Today, though, is a day of reflection. A day to remember lives lost to a barbarous enemy — Islamic fundamentalism. A day to honor the men and women who put their lives on the line everyday, without thought of reward or fame, just so we can enjoy our evening meals in front of our new HDTVs.

Stop in prayer this day to honor what this solemn date has come to mean; then raise your head and say, “Never again!”