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Never forget Always remember



Published: Tue, September 18, 2001 @ 12:00 a.m.



A week ago, America and much of the world stopped dead, watching in horror as the forces of evil snuffed out some 5,000 lives in cowardly attacks on innocent people. We must never forget the men, women and children killed by terrorism. We must never forget the brave firefighters and law enforcement officers who answered the call of duty and died as they rushed to render aid. We must never forget the passengers on United Airlines Flight 93 who gave their lives to protect another American symbol from being destroyed by international criminals. We must never forget the thousands seriously injured who must now endure pain and suffering as they wait for their wounds and burns to heal.

But as we mourn the tragedy of last week, we must always remember that we are Americans. That is why we have already contributed millions of dollars to help those in need. That is why volunteers have turned out in record numbers to help in New York. That is why we have donated blood, food, clothes, blankets and other items desperately needed by those severely affected by the catastrophe that has continued to evolve over the past seven days.

American ideals: And that is why we serve the ideals of our nation best by showing the world -- and especially our enemies -- that America will not be terror-fied. As we remember the victims, we will remember that they died because the terrorists despise the American way of life. Hence, we must continue to carry on that way of life, for if we do not, the terrorists will have won.

We have spent a week in respectful grief. Now we can demonstrate our respect by returning to our jobs, our schools, our pastimes, our day-to-day activities, taking every opportunity to prove that America's strength lies not only in military and economic superiority but in the supremacy of democracy.

The terrorists must be shown how a free people faces down those who would annihilate them.

They must observe our leaders continuing to enact the will of the people. They must see thousands of Americans returning to airports for business or pleasure trips. They must witness that elections are still being held, that stores are still having sales and that their customers are still shopping. They must hear thousands of voices singing the national anthem at baseball and football games.

The terrorists and those who support them must be made to understand how very different we are from them. That our nation is founded on principle. That we believe in certain self-evident truths: that all men are created equal and that they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights, among which are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. And no terrorist will ever take those rights away from us.




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