Letters

Letters 08-03-2015

Real Brownfields Deserve Dollars I read with interest the story on Brownfield development dollars in the July 20 issue. I applaud Dan Lathrop and other county commissioners who voted “No” on the Randolph Street project...

Hopping Mad Carlin Smith is hopping mad (“Will You Get Mad With Me?” 7-20-15). Somebody filed a fraudulent return using his identity, and he’s not alone. The AP estimates the government “pays more than $5 billion annually in fraudulent tax refunds.” Well, many of us have been hopping mad for years. This is because the number one tool Congress has used to fix this problem has been to cut the IRS budget –by $1.2 billion in the last 5 years...

Just Grumbling, No Solutions Mark Pontoni’s grumblings [recent Northern Express column] tell us much about him and virtually nothing about those he chooses to denigrate. We do learn that Pontoni may be the perfect political candidate. He’s arrogant, opinionated and obviously dimwitted...

A Racist Symbol I have to respond to Gordon Lee Dean’s letter claiming that the confederate battle flag is just a symbol of southern heritage and should not be banned from state displays. The heritage it represents was the treasonous effort to continue slavery by seceding from a democratic nation unwilling to maintain such a consummate evil...

Not So Thanks I would like to thank the individual who ran into and knocked over my Triumph motorcycle while it was parked at Lowe’s in TC on Friday the 24th. The $3,000 worth of damage was greatly appreciated. The big dent in the gas tank under the completely destroyed chrome badge was an especially nice touch...

Home · Articles · News · Random Thoughts · What will I Do on 9/11?
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What will I Do on 9/11?

George Foster - September 12th, 2002
I don‘t remember who told me but the shocking news left me in a daze.
A year ago I heard about the terrorist attack as I stood in the Isle Royale ranger station. I had just hiked 10 miles that morning through some of the most beautiful wilderness in North America simultaneously while planes were ramming into skyscrapers. Without the benefit of live TV or radio coverage for most of that fateful day, images I had of the suicide attacks seemed like a horrific nightmare or surely someone‘s idea of a bad joke.
Sitting on the shore of Lake Superior for hour upon hour, I could only hope my grounded puddle-jumper would materialize after the FAA came to their senses and realized there were no terrorists on Isle Royale. Only a few hikers remained on the island and we all were anxious to return home in order to learn more details of the attack. Being cut off from mass communications at a time like this was nerve-wracking but turned out to be blessing in disguise. I was alone with my own thoughts: who could commit such an evil act? Was this the blow that would trigger World War III? I remember praying for the world.
Of course, one year later, the images of smoldering buildings, planes slicing into the World Trade Center, and people running for their lives have been played over and over by the media. The disturbing scenes have become etched in our collective memory forever. If I am forced to listen to Rudy Giuliani drone on one more time about how courageous New Yorkers are (of course, he is right), I will scream.
The one-year anniversary of the most infamous terrorist act in history falls this week. Some will stay glued to the tube, crying, as they watch those buildings collapse for the umpteenth time. Other enraged Americans will discuss bloody revenge against al-Qaeda, Iraq, and whoever seems remotely responsible. Some will shrink with fear from flying commercial flights, entering skyscrapers, or even leaving their home.
As for me - I can‘t imagine watching TV on that day. What can be said or reported by the media that is new? Who could they interview that we haven‘t heard recently? Only Osama bin Laden, himself.
Everyone will handle the anniversary in his or her own way. My inclination is to go back to my isolated island and focus on the beauty in this world. Somehow that, too, seems cowardly - running away while our nation is struggling to come to grips with an invisible enemy.
Remember how tolerant of others and how unified we all felt in the immediate aftermath of the tragedy? George W. Bush had a 110% approval rating. Americans traveled from thousands of miles away to volunteer at ground zero. Democrats held hands with Republicans. Firefighters were finally recognized as the heroes they always have been. Even Fidel Castro condemned the terrorist attacks against America.
The War on Terrorism declared by our government will take many years and work on several different levels. For me, September 11th is a reminder that my energy is best spent working to remove hostility in my own small world rather than focusing on rounding up enemies.
What better way to commemorate the anniversary of 9/11 than to tell your significant other that he or she is loved? Call a friend or family member with whom you have not spoken in a while and say that you care. Perform a random act of kindness for someone in need. Kiss your children. Pet your dog or cat vigorously. Give yourself a big pat on the back.
We will never forget the horror of September 11th, but these are also times that we could learn to love more and hate less.


 
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