I've seen a lot of very polite commentary today about never forgetting.
Most of the polite people forget the "never forgive" part of the equation.
I'm not sure if it's a Jewish thing, but I'm not personally inclined to "forgive" the terrorists.
In fact, I think forgiving terrorists, and other murderers is a first step on the road to forgetting. We should not let time "heal" these wounds. That is not to say that we can't try to have the best, most meaningful lives possible, but forgiveness in these cases is a selfish act, and not a healing act or any such other thing.
Selfish people left in this world can "forgive" the murderers because the dead are not alive to contest that act.
Many of the people who "forgive" have never been directly affected by this act of terror or any other.
So, they can carry on with their self-satisfied forms of forgiveness and then go order their triple 48 ounce frapuccinos, call Paul Ryan a liar, send their children to private school in the Upper West Side by limousine, and pat themselves on the back again for electing America's first black President, and wistfully compose cantatas about how stupid George W. Bush was/is, while America's economy and moral spirit crumbles, and while the West slowly burns.
Although not a masochist, I am often wont to self-torture by reading leftist crap either on line and in print. Another form of self-torture is looking at the periodic updates of the World Trade Centre site.
Now, the definitive piece was written by Mark Steyn last year: The Hole at the Centre.
The fact that there is still construction going on at the site, twelve years on, is a symptom of the malady affecting much of the West.
There should be no construction. There should be no more construction "updates".
There should be nothing in progress at the site other than further commerce, more trade, more business-all bigger, better and stronger than before.
We must reject the attempt to mediocratize the West, and reject the common, despicable and epidemic reduction of all expectations-of individuals and our institutions and elected officials, of our children, of their teachers, of our clergy-this is a generalized phenomenon around us.
Reject the trophies-for-all mentality.
Reject the numbing of the American and Western mind.
We must continue to strive for excellence and achievement, keep building and being proud of the American dream (literally and metaphoric for those of us living elsewhere), and continue to say: yes-our Judeo-Christian culture IS superior.
We are a more moral society than others, and I are not ashamed of that.
We live better. We live longer. Our way of life is the best way ever. We do not sacrifice our children to kill others with glee. Our joy is not murder and death. I'm not embarrassed about that.
Instead of weepy and trite poems about forgiveness and all 'getting along' my goals are more simple, and less inclined to induce vomit (I hope).
Human beings are terribly flawed. My goal is to use my Jewish heritage to raise children who understand our flaws, but use Judaism and the G-d of Israel as their moral guide, compass and their rock. My goal is to live a life unafraid of passing judgement on the morally inferior cultures and actions of others, and take my lumps as necessary.
I will live a life unmoved by the forces of death and destruction so gleefully embraced by the radical left and their Islamic companions and I will not let them inform one, single decision of my life. Not what I say, how I live, how I think, what jokes I make, where I travel, how I vote and how I use my money to support others with similar values and goals. I will fight those forces however I can and whenever I can: philosophically, financially, religiously, intellectually and psychologically.
Perhaps modest goals, but I'm aiming for the achievable, and not the fantastic or the utopian.
Today is a sunny, fall day, exactly like it was when I pulled into the parking lot at work and heard the fellow on the radio saying a plane had crashed into the World Trade Centre in New York. At the time, I was picturing a small plane, a little private one that must have had an inexperienced pilot. I thought to myself that it was odd, but isn't that strange.
It would take a few more minutes before I realized what was going on.
I remember the silence of that day. The silence in the skies.
I remember a friend saying-do you think people will finally get it-what we're up against, and I said no.
In short, my way of remembering, my version of 'never forgive and never forget' includes Jewish and G-d centred lives for myself and my children, supporting the Judeo-Christian society we are privileged to live in and periodically reiterating my intention of never giving up, shutting up or shutting down.
What about you?