… "Our nation, this generation, will lift
the dark threat of violence from our
people and our future. We will
rally the world to this cause by our
efforts, by our courage. We will
not tire, we will not falter and we
will not fail."
-President Bush, September 20, 2001
Images from the September 11, 2001 terrorist attack are forever seared into our collective memory. A traumatized nation was brought to an utter stand still. Speechless and transfixed, America watched in horror as violence authored by evil, unfolded on our television screens. We were a nation in shock; a nation under attack. We mourned, we grieved and then we became angry; as it was clear that we had not been attacked for anything we had done. No, America was attacked for what she stands for; a bright and shining light of freedom and opportunity. In a moment of solidarity, we came together in our cry for justice. We realized that the this new "day of infamy" would require patience, fortitude and perseverance to sustain us as we engaged the enemy in what we already knew would become a long campaign against evil.
The story of courage that defines United Flight 93 is a resolute example of the American patriot; defiant in the face of terror and injustice. It is the ideal to which all true patriots aspire, because there is simply no other way to live. The path of the patriot is never easy, but no other road is acceptable for those who choose freedom as a way of life. We agreed as a nation, that we were ready to accept the hardships and the sacrifices of war and set out to extract justice and eradicate evil. We would defend our way of life and avenge the death of innocents no matter the cost, no matter the length of the journey. The national dialogue was decisive and unwavering as we came to terms with the fact that this violent attack on our nation was an act of war and that fighting this enemy would be nothing less than a long-term engagement.
In the years since terrorists brought war to our soil, many Americans have grown weary of our long campaign against evil. Solidarity has been replaced with acrid division. There are those among us who buy into the insane lie that 9/11 was an inside job; carried out by Americans against Americans. Then, there are those who believe that our conduct on the world stage brought this evil upon ourselves. America with all of her problems, her imperfections, and mistakes remains a great nation with compassionate people, whose ideals of freedom are revered throughout the world. The ‘blame America first’ crowd is naive and misguided in their assumption of our national guilt. They have forgotten that our enemy is relentless and fanatical whose end goal is either our conversion or our death. The apparent complacency of anti-war leftists and their inability to understand that freedom isn’t free serves to embolden our enemy. Contrary to their ill chosen words, we have not failed at our mission. We can’t fail, we can never let evil win. We have no choice but to stay the course. We knew when we started down this road that it would be long, dangerous and that the personal cost of sacrifice would be staggering. In our hour of national pain we realized that although the path is fraught with evil, we must fight for the good of our country and the world.
We learned on September 11th that our weak response to prior acts of terror worked against us by emboldening our enemy. No longer could we afford the luxury of not answering an act of terrorism. The option of war is never arrived at lightly instead it is always presented as a terrible choice with heavy hearts burdened with a responsibility to ferret out and eradicate evil. Our progress in this conflict has been rife with problems, set-backs and wrong courses of action; but no war ever waged has progressed in measured precision. However, war is a responsibility that we must shoulder in our fight against evil to preserve freedom, just as our forefathers preserved it for us.
In early days that followed the attack on our nation, Americans called for the borders to be closed. Not only do they remain wide open, but a week before this year’s remembrance of the 9/11 transgression against our nation, the dept. of transportation authorized the access of Mexican trucks onto our roadways. How is it that we can send our men and women into harm’s way in a foreign theater yet, leave the door unlocked at home? In the aftermath of 9/11, activists for illegal immigrants temporarily toned down their rhetoric, as Americans demanded that our government honor the rule of law on the border. After all, the terrorists responsible for this despicable act had overstayed their visas. That problem remains as untenable today, as it was in the days that led up to 9/11.
It did not take long for special interest groups that champion the cause of non-citizens to swoop down on liberal lawmakers and replace the rose colored glasses that had slipped off their nose. They too, if only briefly, were able to see 9/11 for what it was and that is, an act of war. Before long, lawmakers like this remembered what was dearest to their hearts, not the cause of freedom, but self-preservation. Their place on the stage is only as safe as they are successful at implementing the radical agenda of those who keep them in office.
Legislators on both sides of the aisle have failed the American people at securing the first line of defense in the war on terror, our borders. The government’s failure to restore order and end chaos on the border has left our nation vulnerable to another attack at home. There isn’t a nation on this planet that does not protect the sovereignty of their borders. The preeminent mission of the federal government is to protect us against harm. The time has arrived for America to protect her own by protecting her borders. Let us stay vigilant, let us never forget and let us pursue all means to protect ourselves and our way of life.