America

These past two weeks have been a blur. I’m getting used to turning on the news and seeing coverage of only one subject, THE subject, the life-changing events of Tuesday the 11th. Just the day before I wrote my little “here” about not talking to people in elevators, and how I wish I could go around telling everyone just what I think of them (for better or worse, but hopefully, for better.) Now it seems that perhaps I almost waited too long, as over 6000 people are missing and believed dead, a result of the worst act of terrorism that this country, this WORLD, has ever seen.

We are told by our leaders that the mastermind of this plot will be caught, and will pay for the destruction. I believe in responsibility for actions, but am not sure if annihilating a country already torn by war and one of the poorest in the world is the correct way to go. Yes, those who committed these acts must be punished, but it is imperative that we initially target the true people that are responsible for this: namely, the Taliban and Osama bin Laden. Throughout history, civilians and innocent people have always been affected, and often killed, by war. We, as a country, as a unified front against terrorism partnered with other leading nations of the world, must try to minimize this risk. Dropping a bomb, or many, upon a city to destroy the population as a whole, as a strategy to ‘get’ the one who is hiding, is not only statistically irresponsible, but is trying to make two wrongs into a right. Let’s hope and pray for continued strength for our leaders, troops, and officials as we begin what may be a long road to eliminate terrorism from our world.

Still, everyone is affected differently by the recent events. News channels are starting to deal with the healing process, the psychological ramifications from this most horrid act. Sleeplessness is prevalent, and when we do finally get some rest, it’s often laced with frightening, unsettling dreams of what may still lie ahead.

Our generation has never lived through a major war, and the largest tragedy we have witnessed may have been the Challenger explosion. We know where we were when that event happened, just as we know what we were doing when a plane first hit the World Trade Center, then another, and then the Pentagon. We watched, aghast, as both towers came falling down and we learned of another crash near Pittsburgh. We have been loyal to our television, our radios, but most importantly, our country. Our patriotism has never been this obvious, this strong, this public. We have been changed, yes, but let’s stand behind our leaders, support the heroes who have tirelessly been continuing to search through the rubble, and let our compassion and kindness extend to strangers around the country, and the world.

We are stronger than those cowards who thought they could tear our country apart by a massive act of destruction. We have fear, at times, but are not afraid to stand up for the things that make this country great, the freedom that we are used to, the freedom that our country was built on. This freedom, this strength, is what will allow us to prevail as the strongest, the best, nation in the world.

Just last night I read an article about the benefits of human touch. It increases our immune system, our mood, even elevates endorphin levels, causing all of us to be a bit happier. Now more than ever, this is needed. So take a minute, give your roommate or officemate a hug. Your boss? A pat on the back. Give what you can to others; not just monetarily, but emotionally and spiritually. We are strong, but we are stronger with the support of our family and friends. Love tirelessly and compassionately, and we will begin to heal.

God bless you all and America,

-aub

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