"From the Mailbox" below includes letters from readers concerning the events of September 11. ~ Steve
All members of our Life Support family are affected by the terrorist attacks in the United States today, September 11. Some of our readers may have actually been present at the scenes of the attacks; others may have lost their lives and many lost loved ones. Most of us watched and listened from afar as these horrific events unfolded.
General Omar Bradley wrote this several decades ago: "Ours is a world of nuclear giants and ethical infants. We know more about war than we know about peace, more about killing than we know about living. We have grasped the mystery of the atom and rejected the Sermon on the Mount." Today's attack on American civilians demonstrates again our world's intimate relationship with killing.
Good and decent people around the globe feel shocked and helpless in the face of such indiscriminant violence. We are in shock, but not completely helpless. Here are some suggestions on what you can do:
1. Remember, most persons of particular nationalities and religious or ethnic backgrounds are NOT in favor of attacks upon innocent men, women and children. Such atrocities come from extremist and radical groups. Our anger, though justified, should not broadly target innocent civilians of nation or persons who simply happen to represent a certain religion or ethnicity.
2. This is a time to stick together, as a nation and as a world. All nations must work together to ensure that such atrocities never be allowed to occur again. This incident should usher in an unprecedented time of cooperation as we fight side by side against a common evil. We can dedicate ourselves to the cause of ridding the world of terrorism.
3. We can turn our anger and helplessness into constructive action. Give blood at a donation center close to you. Generously support disaster response groups with material donations and money. Some churches, synagogues, mosques and other religious communities have disaster relief funds that are set up to receive donations for this emergency. Those of faith should also pray for those who lost loved ones, those who are missing and wounded and those who labor to rescue and comfort victims. Pray also for victims and perpetrators of violence throughout the world.
4. All Americans (and others) who are stunned by today's attack should find time to grieve. Consider attending a service at your community of faith to help put the day's events and aftermath in perspective as you grieve for and with families and friends of victims.
5. War, whether it be a conventional war or act of terrorism, is abhorrent to the human family. In the long term, you can channel your anger and concern into constructive support of organizations dedicated to global peace, including the eradication of terrorism, and to groups that give aid to victims of violence and war.
6. Rededicate yourself to loving others. Life is short – cherish every moment of it. America will never be the same again. September 11, 2001 will forever be remembered as a defining moment in our history. But let the history books record it also as a time of unparalleled cohesiveness as nations unite to comfort a country in grief and to commit together to rid our planet of the scourge of terrorism. May God grant us wisdom this pivotal day, comfort as we grieve and healing as we move ahead together.
Steve Goodier, September 11, 2001
WE ARE SO MUCH ALIKE
I work with a lot of foreign people from Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, India, Egypt, etc. and after the bombing this morning, I didn't know how I would feel in talking with these people. The very first one I talked to asked me if I had heard or seen the devastation. When I said yes, he told me how horrible he felt for all the innocent people that were hurt or killed. He said that he knew pretty much how they felt because he had some of the same hurt and death back home. It made me realize how sorry I felt for him, that he had come over here hoping to get away from that kind of life. I realized we were so much alike; as I, too, felt such sorrow for the innocents that were at the wrong place and the wrong time.
I hope people don't go off half-cocked and take their disgust out on someone they don't know. It probably could be someone trying to live a better life, with their families, away from the horror they came from. ~ Anne
LOVE INSTEAD OF HATE
...Your site offers such warmth and love, after a day like today can it ever be we will all feel love for one another instead of hate? Warmly ~ Debbie
I am dedicated to doing my small part to make our world a place we want to leave to our children. How we as a nation and a world respond to the events of today will shape our common future. Thank you for writing. ~ Steve