Today Lives In Infamy

Why is it that on days like today we remember the weather? Why is that? What is it about the weather that conjures for us the mood, the sense of surrealism, the — as J.K. Rowlings described someone in Harry Potter — the “look of eloquent despair”?

I remember the weather those six years ago. It was a typical September day. There was not, on my way out the door to the office, a sense of muggy heat. Warm, but not awful. A day much like today. Clear blue skies with a patch or two of clouds. It was pleasant, free of storm clouds — at least free of the physical, visible clouds of atmospheric storms. But the storm was coming and from the sky.

It was calm. So calm. The breeze had just a hint of fall.

The office was inconsequential that day. I had Department of Transportation depositions relating to the valuation of kaolin on an inconsequential piece of land made consequential solely based on the greed of the owner.

By the time I made it to the office, a small plane had somehow managed to hit one of the towers making up the World Trade Center in New York. It was an odd, freak accident. Except it was not.

Six years ago, for most of us, the odd, freak accident happening in New York as I was stepping off the elevator onto the 14th floor of the Fickling & Co. building into my office at Sell & Melton was no accident — it was the day the world changed violently. It was a meaningful, willful attack. It shook the nation. It’s impact still reverberates, rippling back and forth around the globe like the ripples of water in a wading pool when a brick is thrown forcefully in.

Some of us choose to remember it as it was and is. Some, a friend of mine and others, choose to see it as an anomaly to which we overreacted — an “unfortunate incident” I believe was the phrase used, in New York City, “It’s an overreaction to think it was an attack on the nation or our way of life,” the conversation went, still a bit bitter in my mouth thinking of it.

Six years ago today, we were all attacked. 1 mile, 50 miles, 900 miles, 2500 miles away from us, men, women, children, people we did not know, people we knew, were trapped, broken, burning, dying, crying, praying, lingering between this life and the next, wondering why them, wondering what next, wondering what of their families as their families wondered what of them.

We either choose to remember it as it was and was meant to be or we do not. I remember an attack on my country, my existence, and my way of life. And I remember a man, seemingly unsure of himself, reading a book to school children. Interrupted. A whisper in his ear and a look on his face. And he finished the book to the children instead of rushing off, upsetting them.

He got up. He left. He said a few choice four letter words. He prayed. And he went out willing to do what others might not have been willing to do. He decided not just to defend, but to prevent and pre-empt.

In all my disagreements — in all our disagreements with him and those he surrounds himself with, never would I reject him or repudiate him because he made the hard choice, the choice that tested time and patience, but he stayed patient, he endured. We endure as a result. Despite turmoil and opposition, he weathers the storm and I am glad God chose to drop him into office. Better men have broken under the strain he has endured. And I am thankful.

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Erick Erickson

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8 Comments

  • These are the soldiers who answered the call, and paid the price with their lives. “The Best of Us” includes
    USMC SGT. Kelly Lance Courtney, killed by suicide bomber on October 30,2004 in Fallujah, Iraq.

    I voted for President Bush two times, and I was blessed to be an alternate delegate to the Republican Convention, but I feel that he has listened to the wrong people, since 911. Do we trust the people who took us into Afghanistan with a mere 7,000 troops and have us bogged down in Iraq with a war that was supposed to be a “cakewalk” to push with a preemptive strike against Iran. Six years since 911, and there is still no memorial built in New York City, but yet we have a $600 million dollar US Embassy built in Iraq. Any thoughtful person should scratch their head and say there is something wrong with this picture. God bless the USA, and give the citizens of this great country to wake up and realize that without a change in foreign policy, we are all doomed to the dust bin of history.

  • A good friend just sent me this, it is the Blue Danube Waltz, and yes it did soothe the heart today. So peaceful, and the days that we all long for to come again. Just waltz through life and enjoy the splendour and beauty of God’s grand creation called Earth. My friend said this youtube is to help tame the beast, and I pray that the blood thirsty Neo-cons will go inhabit another Country and leave us all in peace.

  • You know, it’s easy to look at the mistakes made in this war – and there have been many – and talk about what should’ve been done, but the bottom line is God put the right man in office to deal with this problem. Think about the alternative…

    We could’ve been listening to President Gore address the nation after these dispicable attacks. Oh I’m sure he would’ve talked a big game for a few days afterwards, threatening recompense for the deaths of so many innocent Americans, but in the end we all know what he would’ve done…nil – and instead of launching an awe-inspiring display of how our nation responds to sucker-punches, a sickening game of appeasement and soul-searching would’ve resulted in the final conclusion that we are the ones at fault for offending these sorry excuses for human beings in the first place. After all, the success of our nation and way of life is not something to be celebrated, but a mark of shame for what it does to the rest of the world.

    Then again, maybe he would have gone ahead with an offensive against these Islamic terrorists…and we think this war has been mismanaged…imagine Al Gore, Commander-in-Chief (full-body-shudder).

    I’ll take a blood-thirsty neo-con over a head-in-the-sand pacifist do-nothing any day. Unfortunately, it looks like we’ll be getting the latter come next Novemeber. I don’t know how people get by without believing in the sovereignty of God.

    Yes, we’ve lost more precious lives through this war – some because of mistakes made by the men in charge – it happens in war…they’re soldiers, it’s their job. How many more innocent civilians have been killed on American soil by Islamic terrorists since 9/11/01?

    I wonder how our generation of spineless wonders would’ve handled living through WWII?

  • Oh what foolish nonsense you speak, Dennis, we are losing more American lives to this wave of illegal immigration that we are not taking care of. You are naive when you believe that the neocons give one ounce about the lives of Christians who have gave their lives for this illegal war against Iraq. I am not going to forgive anyone that told bold faced lies to attack Iraq for control of the oil and to keep the dollar from crashing when Sadam threatened to trade oil based on the euro.

    Unfortunately too many Christians have their heads buried in the and pretend that the Lord is on the side of our tyrannical government that is on a crusade like the Romans were. It is destroying our own Country! Why can you not see the writing on the wall? Why can you not see that the neocons are just switching over and funding the Democrats. Open your eyes to the truth! Do you think that Jesus trusted politicians? Jesus trusted that the politicians would do the will of God and nail him to the cross for the salvation of mankind because he knew that the corrupt politicians had not a soul nor did they love fellow man.

    It is time for our Christian soldiers to say enough is enough and not spill another drop in foreign soil so corrupt men may profit from the sacrifice. Our Country was not founded on preemptive war, it was founded on just war. And this war in Iraq is not a just war. Dennis and Erick have you read the Sermon on the Mount lately, if not read it! Jesus does say anywhere “blessed are the war mongers for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” Wake up!

  • When you condone evil, you are just as guilty in the eyes of the Lord and that is how we will all be judged. Right now, you are serving on the side of the Devils that rule the world, and it is not Islamic Fascism as it Neo-con Fascism. I have seen the light and it is time for you that are blind to open your eyes and read the words of Jesus Christ. Oh, I know that fundamentalist Christian sermons skip the Sermon on the Mount, and justify preemptive wars with Matthew 24. Jesus said “there will be wars and rumors of war,” but he did not say for his sheep to do the killing!

    Matthew 5
    1And seeing the multitudes, he went up into a mountain: and when he was set, his disciples came unto him:

    2And he opened his mouth, and taught them, saying,

    3Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

    4Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.

    5Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.

    6Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.

    7Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.

    8Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.

    9Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.

    10Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

    11Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.

    12Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.

    13Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.

    14Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.

    15Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.

    16Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

    17Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.

    18For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.

    19Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.

    20For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven.

    21Ye have heard that it was said of them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment:

    22But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire.

    23Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee;

    24Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift.

    25Agree with thine adversary quickly, whiles thou art in the way with him; lest at any time the adversary deliver thee to the judge, and the judge deliver thee to the officer, and thou be cast into prison.

    26Verily I say unto thee, Thou shalt by no means come out thence, till thou hast paid the uttermost farthing.

    27Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery:

    28But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath

  • This is what many of our Marines and soldiers really think Dennis and Erick—Why do you ignore the ones that do what you won’t do for your own personal reasons, but yet you have no respect for those who actually have walked and worked and watched their friends die for what? What in the hell are they dying for????? Are you that ignorant of the TRUTH! Why do you believe the propaganda bs that comes out of Washington DC. Have you not opened your eyes to the adulterers, crooks and homosexuals that conned you us social conservatives? Why are you hanging onto a dream that has been revealed to you? The cards are on the table, and you sit there and keep throwing more poker chips down for a crap shoot knowing that you will lose. This is not about Republican vs Democrat, this is about evil vs good. So what if Gore had been elected President, we would have been in the very same war right where we are today, but fools like you would be saying we need to bring our troops home! I know because I lived during the Vietnam War. You both were mere not even a gleam in your fathers’ eyes back then, and you refuse to learn from those that try to show you the TRUTH. What good is a mind if you do not use it for critical thinking? Come on and wake up!

    A Marine Who Sees Through All the Neoconmen
    Posted by Thomas DiLorenzo at September 12, 2007 12:55 PM

    A new network TV show called “i-Caught” premiered last night, featuring people who have made a splash on Youtube or elsewhere on the internet. It started off with a U.S. Marine who videotaped much of his tour in Iraq. Google “Bored in Iraq” to find many such items. One scene was of a Marine driving a military vehicle and saying, very sarcastically, that after “we’re” finished cleaning up the Middle East “maybe we’ll buy everyone in the world a puppy.”

    He didn’t seem to be of the opinion that he was sent over there to defend his country.

  • Hey Dennis, why is it that you are comfortable with the fact that Osama bin Laden is still at large?

    Do you think that if Al Gore was president, and had done *exactly* every same thing that Bush had done that you would be giving him a free pass?

    Don’t you think you’d be wondering why we invaded a country that was not a threat? And why we empowered Iran?

    If you can answer those questions honestly and really say that you would give Gore the same support that you give Bush, given the exact same results, then I could respect your integrity if not your intelligence. Otherwise, you’re just a hack.