Can Any Good Come from a Terrorist Attack?
Follow up: Now that three years have
passed since September 11, 2001, it would be harder to see if any good did
come from that terrible day.
After two wars, we find ourselves
divided, isolated from the rest of the world, and more vulnerable. Our
enemies seem stronger, bolder, and more determined.
Even in our
darkest moments, we can still find at least one glint of hope. It was in
that spirit, that I wrote this essay shortly after the terrible events of
9/11. Even after what has happened in the subsequent years, the sentiments
With this in mind,
I'd like to share with you again my thoughts of that day:
Can any good from the 11 September terrorist attack on America?
Although it is hard to see any good that could come from such the horrific
and wanton destruction of human life, there are a few positive things:
- There are more American flags on cars in the past week than Laker
flags during the NBA finals.
- We have seen how the Internet can be used for sharing
information, mobilizing charity and support, and building
- We have seen true "reality TV" and learned that
survival has nothing to do with forming alliances and voting people
off. It has to do with working together.
- We will think twice before labeling athletes, pop singers, and
movie stars as "heroes" and "role models."
- We've done away with the stereotypes of New Yorkers as pushy,
obnoxious, and selfish.
- We will do away with the stereotypes of Arab-Americans and
American Muslims as sneaky and disloyal.
- We have the opportunity to liberate Afghanistan from the
brutal, xenophobic Taliban regime that has subjugated women and
religious minorities, retarded global aid and reconstruction
efforts, and further destroyed this suffering country. If we are
going to pursue military action against Afghanistan, it should be to
help their terrorized citizens, not merely to punish terrorists.
- We won't be incessantly bombarded with stories about politicians'
- Democrats and Republicans are finally working together. The 28
years of increasingly hostile partisanship are over.
- We see ourselves as one nation, indivisible. We see ourselves as
- We see that our country is not alone and invulnerable. We have
the opportunity to reach out to the rest of humanity, heal the rifts
that divide us from other nations, and work together to eliminate
this common danger.
America's Fund for Afghan
Revolutionary Association of the Women of
American Red Cross
Daryl Cagel's Cartoon Site of September 11 memorial cartoons