This week we honored the 2,977 Americans who lost their lives in the most deadly attack against the United States in history. Like Pearl Harbor Day, 9/11/01 is a day that should live in infamy. But will it? Will we remember what we learned that day?
On that crisp New York morning, America was attacked by those who hate freedom, hate democracy, and hate peace. For a brief moment in this fresh, young century, still filled with hope and promise, these 50 states were indeed United. We stood together with one voice and we said to the world, "We are not afraid and we will not be silenced."
And while I was never more heartbroken for my country than on 9/11, I was never more proud of our nation than on that September day. The world watched to see whether that star-spangled banner yet waved o'er the land of the free and the home of the brave. And thank God, every American from Gig Harbor, Washington to Bar Harbor, Maine stood as one, shaken but with head held high as both friend and foe looked on and saw us salute her broad stripes and bright stars.
This week America has remembered the events of 9/11. But for how much longer? Nearly one-fourth of Americans today weren't even born twenty years ago. And millions more have forgotten. They have forgotten the unity and brotherhood that made America the greatest nation on Earth.
There are many among us who would have us forget not only 9/11 but all of America's history. They would have us forget the great men and women who conceived this nation in liberty and gave birth to America. They would have us tear down our statues, renounce our own history, and sift America's greatness through the worthless sieve of wokeness. They have divided us by color, by gender, by faith, by age, by vaccination status, and by politics. They have pitted us one against another until many Americans would gladly secede from this once great union if they were given the chance.
But like it or not, we all share one history. With all its greatness and with all of its warts, it's our history. It belongs to all of us. No one has the right to erase it. Not this week. Not any week.
Our enemies are gloating this week. America left Afghanistan in a hasty retreat, leaving behind billions in high-tech military hardware and fellow Americans behind enemy lines. Our enemies are gloating because we snipe at one another from behind the pillars of social media and we plant land mines where we hope our political foe will tread. They gloat as they watch us riot in our streets and they celebrate as we condemn the very first responders we praised only twenty short years ago. They rejoice as Americans surrender their constitutional freedoms one by one in the name of fear and the hope of safety.
We must not let this continue. We are allowing the most hate-filled among us to knock down the towers of faith and hope that have always been foundational to America's greatness. Enough. No more.
Truly, God has shed His grace on America and I am asking those of you who still believe in prayer to join me in crying out for God's blessing and a rebirth of the spirit of unity we all experienced twenty years ago this week. Out of one of the darkest days in our nation's history came forth hope for America's future. May it happen again.
The hour is late, but it's not yet night. We still have a chance if we stand together and say “no” to those who seek to divide our nation and say “'yes” to brotherhood — from sea to shining sea. Let this week of remembrance stir every American to reject the voices of hate that seek to divide us and embrace the future together — just as we stood together 20 years ago.