A note on the World in Crisis

We are all devastated by the events that have taken place recently. I offer these words of inspiration and of truth. Read on...

This was the column from a few days ago from Leonard Pitts.
He writes for The Miami Herald:

It's my job to have something to say.
They pay me to provide words that help make
sense of that which troubles the American
soul. But in this moment of airless shock
when hot tears sting disbelieving eyes, the
only thing I can find to say, the only words
that seem to fit, must be addressed to the
unknown author of this suffering.

You monster. You beast. You unspeakable

What lesson did you hope to teach us by your
coward's attack on our World Trade Center,
our Pentagon, us? What was it you hoped we
would learn? Whatever it was, please know
that you failed.

Did you want us to respect your cause? You
just damned your cause.

Did you want to make us fear? You just
steeled our resolve.

Did you want to tear us apart? You just
brought us together.

Let me tell you about my people. We are a
vast and quarrelsome family, a family rent
by racial, social, political and class
division, but a family nonetheless. We're
frivolous, yes, capable of expending
tremendous emotional energy on pop cultural
minutiae -- a singer's revealing dress, a
ball team's misfortune, a cartoon mouse.

We're wealthy, too, spoiled by the ready
availability of trinkets and material goods,
and maybe because of that, we walk through
life with a certain sense of blithe
entitlement. We are fundamentally decent,
though -- peace-loving and compassionate. We
struggle to know the right thing and to do
it. And we are, the overwhelming majority of
us, people of faith, believers in a just and
loving God.

Some people -- you, perhaps -- think that
any or all of this makes us weak. You're
mistaken. We are not weak. Indeed, we are
strong in ways that cannot be measured by

Yes, we're in pain now. We are in mourning
and we are in shock. We're still grappling
with the unreality of the awful thing you
did, still working to make ourselves
understand that this isn't a special effect
from some Hollywood blockbuster, isn't the
plot development from a Tom Clancy novel.
Both in terms of the awful scope of their
ambition and the probable final death toll,
your attacks are likely to go down as the
worst acts of terrorism in the history of
the United States and, probably, the history
of the world. You've bloodied us as we have
never been bloodied before.

But there's a gulf of difference between
making us bloody and making us fall. This is
the lesson Japan was taught to its bitter
sorrow the last time anyone hit us this
hard, the last time anyone brought us such
abrupt and monumental pain. When roused, we
are righteous in our outrage, terrible in
our force. When provoked by this level of
barbarism, we will bear any suffering, pay
any cost, go to any length, in the pursuit
of justice.

I tell you this without fear of
contradiction. I know my people, as you, I
think, do not. What I know reassures me. It
also causes me to tremble with dread of the

In the days to come, there will be
recrimination and accusation, fingers
pointing to determine whose failure allowed
this to happen and what can be done to
prevent it from happening again. There will
be heightened security, misguided talk of
revoking basic freedoms. We'll go forward
from this moment sobered, chastened, sad.
But determined, too. Unimaginably

You see, the steel in us is not always
readily apparent. That aspect of our
character is seldom understood by people who
don't know us well. On this day, the
family's bickering is put on hold.

As Americans we will weep, as Americans we
will mourn, and as Americans, we will rise
in defense of all that we cherish.

So I ask again: What was it you hoped to
teach us? It occurs to me that maybe you
just wanted us to know the depths of your
hatred. If that's the case, consider the
message received. And take this message in
exchange: You don't know my people. You
don't know what we're capable of. You don't
know what you just started.

But you're about to learn.

Thank you for reading. Now on to the cool stuff...