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September 11, 2001

What a horrible day.

There isn't much that I can say that can sum up what we all are feeling; many others who are much more eloquent than I have said better words than I can muster. Along the same lines, there's a bunch of idiots saying just clearly stupid things. The media has clearly been sensationalizing this tragedy. I had to stop to get gas to make it back to Louisville; it was amazing what some of the locals were saying inside the gas station (e.g., I actually heard someone say "Buy guns. No one is safe.").

Driving out of Bloomington today, there were tremendously long lines for gas at every gas station. Some of the stations had clearly artificially raised prices. The Louisville news showed a gas sign at
$2.50 for unleaded (the normal price around here 2 days ago was about
$1.60-1.70). Is there no end to greed?

But then again, I was truly inspired hearing about all the stories of random New York people helping others. Thousands of volunteers just showing up asking for what they can do to help. Blood banks filling with hundreds of volunteers -- all over the country.

This is a horrendous tragedy. Like most others, I'm still finding it hard to believe that this has happened. "It's just like a movie," I've heard many say.

But this is just what the terrorists want. The first part of that word is "terror" -- that's the real win for these people. Not just a horrific event, but the long-term affects of creating terror in our lives.

I refuse to submit.

I will continue to live my life. I will grieve with the rest of this country, and try to comprehend what has happened. But I will not live in terror.

And so must everyone else. Will there be heightened security? Probably so. But I will still be me, and you will still be you. Remember that, and remember that we Americans are a resilient people... even if it doesn't feel that way right now. We will live on. We are resilient people.

Remember that, and be that.

What about retribution?

This is actually a complicated issue; my feelings on this are varied and conflicting. The outraged American male in me wants immediate public, brutal retribution on all who were responsible. Seeing the TV shots of Palistineans rejoicing at our loss is just incomprehensible. And I do not doubt that the US government will activate the military in the next 24 hours for some kind of retribution. However, swift retribution by the US will undoubtedly spawn additional anti-American sentiment, and potentially create a downward spiral of cause and effect. But doing nothing would create the perception that the US is weak, and potentially invite more terrorist activity in the US.

I can do anything about this, so I can only hope and pray that the US's response (as I believe that there inevitably will be one) is a directed attack and only the guilty are affected.

As with the rest of American and American-friendly parts of the world, my thoughts and prayers go out to all who were affected today.

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on September 11, 2001 10:31 AM.

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