God Bless America

September 11, 2001

I love this country. I'm an old-fashioned, flag-waving patriot; I know all the words to our National Anthem, and those words still send a shiver up my spine. I still get teary-eyed whenever I see Old Glory flying or proudly displayed. I get choked up whenever I think of those who have fought and died for that flag and this country. We may have our faults, but this is still the greatest country in the world. One nation, under God.

Today, we are seeing the most horrendous act of terrorism ever seen in this country. Like every other American, I've watched in disbelief as the horror unfolded throughout the day. My heart is breaking for all the innocent victims, their families, and especially for all the brave and wonderful firefighters, police, and emergency personel who risked and spent their lives trying to save the lives of others. I hope anyone reading this joins me in prayer for all of these.

I also pray that this country continues to band together, as we have in the past when our country was threatened. Here in America, for all it's faults, we have been truly blessed by God Almighty. We have the highest standard of living, the greatest amount of personal freedom, the greatest access to education and medical care, in the entire world. And people in other countries want these freedoms that we take for granted.

Virtually every other country in the world looks to the United States for help, whether military or financial. We help them rebuild their war-torn or disaster-stricken countries. We send millions of dollars, millions of tons of grain, civil engineers and military advisors, to countries politically opposed to everything we believe in. We allow thousands into this country to work, go to school, and make a better life for themselves and their families. When was the last time you heard of someone trying to get all their family into Russia, for instance? Or the last time someone tried to swim to get into China?

Yes, the United States of America has tried to help virtually every other country in the world in one way or another. And yet this great country is scorned, abused, and hated in many of those countries. Food that is sent to help starving children is dumped out and wasted by governments hostile to this country. Our flag is burned, our embassies and military installations are bombed, our president is burned in effigy, our military personel are jeered at and spit upon, and become targets for terrorists.

I watched today as in one area openly hostile to the United States, people cheered in the streets at the reports of this devastation in America. I cannot even begin to imagine such a hateful, callous and total disregard for human life. What kind of human being could possibly cheer in the streets at such a senseless and shameful act of violence? I saw women, wives and mothers--- the givers and keepers of life, of family and home---cheering and dancing, and I can only wonder how could they possibly rejoice in so much death and destruction?

In the past, I've watched news reports of death and destruction in their countries, from both natural disasters , or civil wars; never once, ever, have I felt the urge to rejoice or cheer. I have in fact cried over the loss of life in countries I've never been to, of people I've never known. Even though their political and religious beliefs are directly opposed to my own, each one of those who die is someone's child. Each one who dies is loved by someone. How could I rejoice over that? How could anyone?

I hope our President sends a strong and very certain message to the world that such senseless violence directed toward this country will not be tolerated. Tears of pride filled my eyes when I saw our entire body of Congress standing on the steps of our nation's capital, pledging their full support of our President, and singing "God Bless America". What an awesome and moving sight! I would hope we would impose diplomatic and economic sanctions, as well as appropriate military intervention. I hope the citizens of this great nation support their country and their President whole-heartedly during this time of crisis. And I most fervently pray that such a horrific act never happens again. Anywhere.

Please join me and thousands of others all across this great country as we pray for our country, our leaders, and all the victims of this terrible tragedy. God Bless America!