Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Honor the memory by flying the flag

From my local weekly newspaper, The People- Sentinel:

Wednesday, September 5, 2007 6:15 PM EDT

There's no flashy advertising campaign on this particular cause, no fancy lobbying group backing it, no slick public service announcement fronted by the celebrity du jour.

No, this is strictly a grassroots effort.

The anonymous e-mail urging support for this cause had been forwarded so many times its electrons were probably exhausted.

What is this cause, this effort, this Big Purpose?

Fly the American flag.

Specifically, fly Old Glory on Tuesday, Sept. 11 if you aren't already flying the flag every day (which isn't a bad idea).

It's been six years since we as a nation stood transfixed by the awful images frozen on our front pages or unfolding on our television screens.

The scenes come to our minds with an uneasy quickness: World Trade Center office workers leaping to a quicker death than face a burning one within the crippled Twin Towers. New Yorkers, faces scarred in panic, outrunning the dust clouds of debris and ash as the Towers fold inward on themselves and collapse. The grim faces of firefighters finding too many bodies and many of them ones they served beside only days earlier.

It's been six years since that watershed day.

Yet the images remain, along with the memories, the pain, the shock and the disbelief at this national tragedy.

But with the uneasy images come ones of pride: The tired and tight faces of firefighters (again) and emergency workers at Ground Zero as they work around the clock. Americans lining up to give blood (another perennial good idea).

One more image from that time six years ago - flags, many flags, flying in unison with yellow ribbons.

Let's honor them again and show our colors on Sept. 11.

Unfurl a flag on that day of all days.


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