On September 11, 2001 we stood with our fellow citizens of New York, and Washington DC as well as those who died in a field in Pennsylvania. It was a natural reaction to a terrorist act on the homeland. We were not the only ones to stand up and condemn this action. It was condemned across the world. The acts of 9/11 were not just taken symbolically around the world as an attack on all citizens of the earth. The bringing down of the World Trade Center was literally an attack on the world. People from more than 90 countries died in New York. People everywhere were outraged.
In the wake of the tragedies in Paris, Beirut, Egypt over the Sinai and elsewhere across the globe, do not let your Tea Party friends explain that some right-wing bigots with hand guns could have stopped these tragedies. Don’t let their hate of immigrants or other religions fool you. Some of the worse tragedies of all time have happened here, they are not confined to other countries. No idiots “packing heat” will stop a well-coordinated attack by terrorists.
We stood with Paris after the attacks on the French magazine, Charlie Hebdo. At that time I explained, as did many that “Je suis Charlie.” It was not that we could identify with “Charlie.” The magazine was a bigoted publication that repeatedly provoked a particular “religious” group. It was because an attack on freedom of the press anywhere in the world, is an attack on all our freedoms.
Now we stand with Paris again. The coordinated attacks this week in the French capital are an indication of the lengths these terrorist groups will go. Are they to be feared? Of course, that is what they want. Will the world stand up against ISIS and those who claim responsibility? It is the only response. Humanity must stand together or this type of thing will never end. We should learn the lessons of a house divided.
It is important to point out that no matter what terrorists spokesmen may claim, this is not an act of religion. The phrase “Terrorism has no religion” has been trending on social media. Muslim leaders around the world condemned the attacks (Washington Post). Pope Francis has referred to the global terrorist attacks as “piecemeal WWIII.” It is probably in that light that we should consider our global response.
All attacks on innocents should be taken somewhat personally As a society we must consider what is next. Putting hand guns on the persons of right-wing bigots will protect no one and is not a plan at all. Certain Republican candidates will now find the opportunity to spread hate and fear while spewing the NRA (National Rifle Association) party line. We need something better.
I did not know anyone in New York or Washington on 9/11, but I watched in horror as many of us did. They were my countrymen and citizens of the world that died that day. We did not have to know them to mourn them.
Now I have come to realize that I have many friends in Paris, so this recent tragedy hits home to me more than it does for some in our country, I would guess. Four of my friends reported their safety on facebook. A few others have not yet commented. I have sent them my concerns. Any tragedy in Paris is like a tragedy down the street from me. The world is our global village. Good people of all colors, nationalities, and religions must have a coordinated global response to the “piecemeal World War III” or we will be standing up and mourning these tragedies over and over.