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Sunday, September 11, 2016

YOU'VE HEARD IT ALL

2001, a year that lives in infamy, probably more shocking in some ways than 1941.

We are a nation of pride; distilled in our sense of invulnerability yet we have twice in our history felt the rage of others on our shores. The attack on Pearl Harbor was something that some military experts were aware of, we were even tipped off hours prior to the attack, but because of who we are, the constant; we did not think it possible. There are theories out there that the President of the US, Franklin Delano Roosevelt knew it was coming and wanted it because he knew we would eventually be involved in the war in Europe. Why did he? Because he understood that if we didn't get involved, we might someday soon see Nazi Germany occupying Mexico and perhaps Canada if England lost the war. The conspiracy theories are out there and some of it is pretty convincing concerning what Roosevelt knew.

There is also a theory out there that President Bush knew something was heading our way, and even there, conspiracy theories are out there. I personally don't believe that, since we weren't that engaged with Al Qaeda yet, there were no organized governmental watchdogs on the job at any level of real sophistication, yet no one knows for sure.

But the thing that matters most is the lives, American Lives that were lost those two particular days. Who could ever forget those days, we knew where we were, what we were doing and how we found out. Although I wasn't alive during the Pearl Harbor attack, vivid recounts from my parents and relatives who were alive gave me a clear picture of not only the events but the feeling of rage and fear of a war thrust upon them.

9/11 was a different case. Many of us not only were alive, we witnessed it almost first hand, with media coverage so swift and detailed because of TV and the Internet. "America was attacked today!" was an all too familiar constant to our ears and eyes.

And America was attacked that day, the plumes of smoke and soot that chased my fellow Americans down the canyons of the battery, were indistinguishable as to race or religion, or even political affiliation. They were Black, Hispanic, Asian and White, born here in this country. It sent me a message first and foremost that I like to share with people. We are not Black, Hispanic, Asian and White, we are Americans first. That Black, Hispanic, Asian and White lives matter, and to Americans, they matter the most.

I see the rhetoric of the tragedies of police killing people, and I can understand the anger toward policemen and women, but I do know they were there when lives mattered in the twin towers. I can prove this by taking you to the cancer wards that are now dealing with the brave police, along with the Firemen and EM's that defied the attackers, and under great peril to lives and limbs and personal stress both physically and mentally, that all lives indeed mattered. There were no selections of what type got rescued, just determination to save lives, all lives.

I see and hear about the protest against the Salutation to the flag, the athletes who choose to not stand in respect, and those that are supporting them in larger numbers every day. What I see disturbs me, because it is really being directed to a symbol that represents people. The American people are the government, they are the very ones who create laws to protect and defend constitutional rights of Black, Hispanic, Asian and White people from unjust events, and injustice to anyone. There should be anger that injustice does exist, but if there is no action, then you protest. But in this day and age, justice will always be served as long as the colors fly. There are too many to allow anything else, that's who we are, that is what the flag means.

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