Sunday, September 11, 2011

Another Day

Father's Day, Mother's Day, Veteran's Day, President's Day, Grandparent's Day (which also happens to be on the eleventh of this month) and finally September 11. A day when we discharge our obligation to remember and honor something very important and move on.

Grief, tragedy, loss-- those are the words drifting like pale ashes in the cold autumn air. Tears, sorrow and downward glances. Like mourners at an annual funeral we troop down to the holes in the earth, gaze down into the missing coffin though the bodies have long since been dumped, and we weep or stare straight ahead looking for something that we lost.

September 11 is the day we lost. Lost our self-assurance, our sense of invulnerability, our loved ones, our towers and our optimism. And we gained surprisingly little. Like Londoners in the Blitz, it was in our grasp for a moment. That sense of camaraderie that comes from being a nation under fire. A city filled with ethnic rivalries ever since the Dutch and the English taunted one another on streetcorners where everyone values their personal space, suddenly became one. We had all lost, but we also had a common enemy. We were at war.

That has become the second loss of that day. The first loss is what they did to us. The second loss is what we did to ourselves.

You walk down the street on a fine day with a breeze in the air and the warm scent of muffins drifting from a nearby bakery and someone punches you in the back of the head. Shock is your first reaction. Then anger. "Why did they do this to me", turns into, "I'll get the bastards". But what if you never get angry and stay shocked. Then what happened to you never takes on any meaning. You remain helpless and hurt.

September 11 has become the day of permanent shock and enduring hurt, where we struggle with our pain because the nation has been told not to get angry, warned not to judge or lay blame for the atrocities of the day on its perpetrators. It has become the day we stare at our televisions, at our screens or at the ground in front of us and try to make sense of why we were hit in the back of the head.

Is it something we did wrong? Did we deserve it? Down into the coffins of stone we stare and can only contemplate the impossible mysteries of mortality. Where do we go when we die? Why do bad things happen to good people?

The same useless questions go round and round and the same events are relived over and over again in a national purgatory of pain. Unlike Pearl Harbor, Iwo Jima, Belleau Wood, Gettysburg, there is never any sense to it because there is no larger meaning. Only the remembrance of the day when we were attacked by people we shouldn't talk about for reasons that don't bear examining. And there is nothing but the pain.

Endless pain is helplessness which can't be healed, only repressed and eventually forgotten. And so we dedicate one day, one week, to reliving the events to the extent that we are allowed to relive them, and then the wound must be scabbed over and off we go to work, shopping and cheerfully greeting our Muslim neighbors who are in no way associated with the events of the day. "Hi there!" "Salaam Aleikum."

But still there is the ache in the back of the head that won't go away. Someone hit us. Who. Why. What can we do about it? We can line up and take off our shoes and let the nice man grope us in the hope that people whose identities we don't discuss won't find a way to kill us on this flight. It's just another day in another week in the tenth year after our lives changed in ways we don't talk about.

Repression makes healing impossible. It fills us with a poison that turns us against ourselves. To be helpless is to learn self-loathing and then when you are hit on the head, you nod because you know why you were hit. Because you deserved it.

Self-hatred is one answer to the larger questions of pain and evil. If you accept that you are an awful person and deserve everything that is coming to you, then there is no longer any shock, only the slow atonement of pain and suffering. The more you are hit, the more you deserve it for all your support of tyrants and arms sales to Israel, women who walk in front of a man and cartoons that mock prophets. Hit me again, I deserve it. Better yet, hit one of those red state chaps who reads the bible and has never read anything by Karen Armstrong or Richard North Patterson. Take him, not me.

Another day. Another appeasement. A Ground Zero mosque, what a fine idea. What better way could there be to repress the knowledge of what actually happened than with such glorious constitutional masochism.

The calendar flips, and the shock is still there. It is only when you get angry that the shock lifts and the helplessness goes away with it. It is only when you realize who hit you and get angry over it that you become yourself again. Until then there are tears and bewilderment, grief and sorrow at this terrible tragedy. Why did they have to die? Who knows. We don't talk about it. No one is supposed to talk about it.

Brush away the repression of the political center and the masochism of the political left, and you find the angry heart of a nation beating underneath. It's deeper in Europe, there you have to dig for days to come up with more than clenched teeth of people who have been taught for generations to grit their teeth and grumble quietly about inconsequential things.

Americans though have not learned to be silent. The self-censorship so common in Europe is found here only in a small educated class that has spent too much time sitting through faculty meetings and attending sensitivity seminars. Instead there is the bafflement of people who have been lied to over and over again, and know that they are being lied to,  but still can't quite understand why they are being lied to and how deep the lies go.

Who are you going to believe, your common sense-- or the media and politicians of both parties, academics, writers, poets, pundits, billionaires, CEO's, diplomats, generals, princes, celebrities and everyone else who is important but you've never met in person? Could they all be lying to you? And if they are-- isn't that as big of an attack as September 11. If not even bigger?

Choosing between the solipsism of common sense and the consensus of self-deceit is a tough one. It is easier not to choose, to immerse yourself in grief while doing your best to be reasonable about it. And the anger sinks into that porridge of confusion and grief-- the murky waters of the commemorations officiated over by sorrowful politicians who use words like courage and tragedy, who remind us that we can recover from anything. And we have, haven't we?

Sure the Twin Towers aren't coming back. There will be tall buildings there, but they won't be them. Because we're moveon.orging past all that. We don't need the Towers rebuilt and we don't need to smash those behind this. It's enough that we killed some of them and took out their leader. And if we line up when we're told and drop our pants on command and always carry our ID's-- then maybe next time they'll fail. Because that's what courage means, doesn't it?

“To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven,” Giuliani read. And what time and season is it now, and what purpose do they serve?

There was a time when we were angry and we were told not to be angry anymore. There was a time when we went to war, but then we decided it was more important to build nations. And now all we have is an endless craving for peace as we look down into the sight of mass death and come away with nothing but more pain. More shock and sorrow.

"When do we win this?" millions of Americans wonder. When do we finally declare victory. But how can we win when we don't even know who we're fighting? How do we win when we're not even allowed to be angry.

As shock turned to anger, and anger turned to the quiet bafflement of a nation waiting to move on. But where is there to move on to? We have gone to Afghanistan and Itaq, to the holes in the ground at Ground Zero. Over and over again we have laid the wreaths and bodies down in the sand and earth. We have laid our tears down and wept. And where do we go now?

Another day is here. September 12, 2011. Once again we can march away from the memorials and the memories and go back to work, shop in malls and say hello to our friendly Muslim neighbors. "Hi there!" "Salaam Aleikum."

But through all the pain and sorrow, throughout all the remembering and the minutiae of detail, it is not over.

September 11 is every day. Every day that we walk through the security forces of a frightened inept government to board a plane. Every day that a terror alert sends us scrambling to expect the worst. Every day that soldiers come home dead. Every day that another one of our Muslim neighbors plots to kill us. Every day is September 11.

We cannot leave it behind by grieving and remembering for a single day. We cannot escape it in a few years of war. There is no leaving it behind in appeasement or in tears. It cannot and will not be left behind until we deal with it. Until we deal with what it really means.

Today is September 11. Tomorrow will be September 11. It will be September 11 every day of every year until we are either destroyed or we wake up. It is the day we repeat over and over again until we wake up.

Today is September 11, 2001.


Anonymous said...

I actually think a lot of Americans are quite awake, quite angry, and becoming educated about who the enemy is. But, the mainstream media has a stranglehold on information. And our schools, colleges, and universities have a stranglehold on the minds of the young. So how do we move forward with our increasing body of knowledge, fighting the daily war of creeping sharia within a context of still too many uneducated masses. How different life could be if this blog was what millions of Americans read each day. How different if we had a President who loved America. And so on. What are we to do to advance the truth and save ourselves?

Anonymous said...

Robert Spencer has a good piece published at Human Events today that is related to the subject matter addressed in this piece. Not sure which is a more depressing read, but read them we must if we want to be grounded in reality.

foxy said...

Again you analyse the situation with precision. What you say about Europe is so true and it is frightening to many of us who are not blinded and who see reality. A lot of us are writing on blogs trying to open eyes and ears by exposing what the left really says and does, by blowing away the smoke screen the left is so adept in creating. It is not easy and we have to be careful in how to formulate what we are trying to expose because we run the risk of being sued in court and face a financial punishment that would break us and silence us. We hope to convince a majority to wake up and will continue to prod brains and peel away covers.

Keliata said...

I can't for the life of me figure out why we didn't declare war on the country the terrorists were from.

One of the Sunday morning shows on PBS discussed the attacks. How strange was it for the host (McNeil) to include the terrorists when discussing the people who died? He made it sound as if they were victims!

Then he made another very odd comment--he called president Bush "of late and honorable memory."

Strange isn't it?

He made it sound as if Bush were dead. Really odd comments.

DP111 said...
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DP111 said...
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DP111 said...

DG wrote: Endless pain is helplessness which can't be healed, only repressed and eventually forgotten. And so we dedicate one day, one week, to reliving the events to the extent that we are allowed to relive them, and then the wound must be scabbed over and off we go to work, shopping and cheerfully greeting our Muslim neighbors who are in no way associated with the events of the day. "Hi there!" "Salaam Aleikum."

The endless pain, the self-doubt that creeps in due to the relentless propaganda of the MSM, eventually leads to self-loathing. Hatred of the self because we know we are cowards to let this happen to us by our own. We know too that we are cowards not to recognise, and we know that as well. Its all part of the same helplessness.

I hope this does not go away, and Americans face their doubts squarely. I'm sure they will. America will right itself, as it did after the Vietnam war. And neither will the enemy go away. There are still may rounds to go and many scores to settle. As Pres Bush said at the time, this war will go on for 50 years. Its going to be like the 100 year war.

revereridesagain said...

Anyone who has been punched in the back of the head, knocked to their knees, then gotten up and found the will to fight back can tell you what that does for your self-respect and confidence and resolve to never become an unwitting victim again, to always know who has hit you and why and what you can do to put an end to their rapacity. We see that in the heroes of books and movies who "take the law into their own hands" and strike back against those who have devastated their lives. Back in the 70's in New York we had a movie called "Death Wish", in which Charles Bronson's screen wife and daughter are brutally murdered and raped, respectively. Following a period of helpless grief and fear, Bronson's character starts fighting back, decimating the city's criminal population and earning the wrath of the law as a "vigilante". I say "we" because I was a New Yorker then and it's hard to describe how much we loved that movie. And as Bronson's character's success at weeding out killers, robbers, and rapists increased, the grief remained but you could see his helpless anger turn to confidence and his love for life returning.

Not many of the "vigilantes" are allowed to get away with it by the movie studios' censors. (In almost every production of "The Count of Monte Cristo", the title character is denied the satisfaction and reward so joyfully bestowed on him by Dumas in the novel.) In our "enlightened" age he must be punished for enacting his righteous revenge. But many more get past the finger-wagging censor's disapproving eye, to the approving cheers of the audience. Superheroes are frequently of this genre, that's why they are so popular.

(DP111: Since when, with the exception of the Reagan years, did America "right itself" after Vietnam? The college-age marxist savages who were blowing up buildings in my NY neighborhood in the 60s are now paying calls on their friend Barack in his new White House gig. This cannot be a 100 year or even a 50 year war any more than the 1930s could have gone on for another 50 years with no resolution. Going rounds and settling scores on a piecemeal basis will only drain us like a giant vampire kegger. Our only hope is for enough people to become aware of the nature of the Islamic enemy and to knock it down decisively when in inevitably strikes, which will probably be within the next 10 years, not 50.)

Madeline Brooks said...

If our realistic rage were not being suppressed by the gov't and its media, we could discuss effective ways to deal with the Muslim problem, like very restrictive immigration policies, more mosque monitoring, massive deportations, and so forth. We would be saying, "This Muslim population is a threat to our security and we will deal with it, of course." Instead, by driving rage underground, we can expect more depression, escapism leading to gov't approved stupidity, and violence - from our side. As one of the speakers at a rally yesterday said, "We are losing the war. Become friends with Mr. Colt and the Second Amendment."

Anonymous said...

Ouch !!!
Mr. Knish, your article is so very true that it hurts like a punch in the eye !!
America has been already defeated... The religion of hate has infiltrated itself so deep into the American institutions, press, media and everything, and now it's succeeding in destroying the American values from inside, like a cancer or a virus.
What they haven't yet understood, same as for every parasitic entity, is that when the host creature is destroyed, the parasite collapses together, and only the eggs or larvae are left to invade another body.
Islam is an illness of the soul, and the Left who suppport it is so utterly stupid that they don't understand how they're going to be trashed by their "friends" after they achieve what they want - i.e. total power.
Depressing !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

cornholio said...

I don't really understand why Soros and others on the left ally themselves w/islamonazism. Do they really think islamonazism has ever shared power w/anyone not muslime? Do the leftist tools really think the muslimes will just hold hands w/the left and sing cumbaya if they ever gain power? I can't imagine someone like Soros being that naive -- especially considering he personally survived the Holocaust!

Anonymous said...

RE: Giuliani’s Quote

“’To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven,’ Giuliani read.”

I did not follow 9/11 ceremony so I do not know the context of Giuliani’s quoting of King Solomon. It may be that he understood the teaching, that he used this passage correctly. But it may be that he actually meant that the tragedy was then and it was sad; this is now and we must remember the sadness, but we have moved on. The season is over.

But there is certainty in King Solomon’s words. He was trying to convey that there is a proper time for everything. A definite time for everything. And we have to act in a different manner, according to the time in which we find ourselves. We have to adjust for the reality at each particular time and place. The message is that we must avoid tripping up by trying to re-define reality. Everyone loves peace, but it might be a time for war and at such time a peacenik is unequipped.

For a recent treatment of this see “A Time for Change” by Asher Keren.


DP111 said...


After the Vietnam war, America virtually withdrew from the world. The USSR's influence increased rapidly, not just in the ME, but Africa and Asia.

The election of Ronald Reagan, turned the tide. For a while, till Clinton was elected, America was once again setting the agenda. The USSR fell, communism was discredited, and Eastern Europe was free.

As for waging war in a direct manner. Pres GW Bush did try it for a while, but due to the liberal paradigm that rules the West, it is not possible at the moment to wage war in a direct manner. Therefore indirect means have to be chosen - and that means it is going to be a long long war - unless Muslims get stupid and nuke a Western city.

dave s said...

A better quote from Ecclesiastes and one which I might suggest could apply to your writing
"The words of wise men are heard in quiet more than the cry of him that ruleth among fools"
Chapter 9 V 17

Anonymous said...

Didn't Soros survive the Halocaust by collaborating with the Nazis?

Anonymous said...

Dear Daniel and other posters:

I completely agree with everything being sad about the treasonous behavior by MSM and the spineless politically correct mindset.

However, as a practical matter and in accordance with the principles of the US Constitution, what do you do with the Muslims already and other third world colonists who are living here among us and procreating at alarming rates using our social assistance programs? What do you do with their children who were born here in the US?

It seems that by the time enough people become aware enough to take action, the only feasible means of resistance will be the small caliber manual weapons still allowed under the 2nd Amendment. I am not sure that being able to protect my home and family for about 10-15 minutes before being run over will be very productive from a civilizational point of view.

Raising awareness is not enough. Many victims of history were quite aware of the impending perils and it didn't help them at all. Plus, with the collapse of all western nation-states, there is nowhere to go. Even China will not remain immune forever, and it's not like they are laying out welcome mats. What is the practical solution?


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