Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Absit Invidia*

It feels wrong to let today go by without saying anything about the anniversary of September 11th. It also seems unlikely that I can say anything that hasn't already been said, and probably more eloquently.

I will say this: it's hard to think about that day, now, without also thinking about the war it spawned. And it's hard to think about that war and to look at the fallen soldiers, on either side, without seeing the faces of my friends. I would by lying if I said that I knew how the hell to get out of Iraq in any way that makes sense and opining about what should or shouldn't have been makes no sense at this stage.

I thought to look to history for guidance, but so many mitigating factors shape the course of a war, that it's nearly impossible to draw any worthwhile lessons. Historians speak of wars won and lost, but ultimately that only affects who dictates the terms of peace until the next war.

And so I feel irrevocably sad for all those lives lost in the towers and also for the lives lost in response. I pray, in my own way, that reason will triumph over idiocy, in all its many forms, on all sides of this war. And when I say "war," I want to be clear that I'm speaking globally.

As I said when the Queen of the World died, the only lesson you can take from a catastrophe of this magnitude is to work tirelessly to make the lives of those we love a little better, a little happier, because we will all be here together for so short a time. That seems relatively doable, right? Maybe we could also try to solve world hunger and poverty and end ignorance, too, but I don't like to get ahead of myself.

And if that sounds like contrived sentiment, I apologize.

*Absit Invidia, Latin, "Let ill will be absent"


Anonymous said...


Jendeis said...

Just wanted to wish you all a Happy Rosh Hashanah!

Anonymous said...

i hate the short hand that people use. september 11 isn't an event to be commemorated. we don't notice the "anniversary of october 6" or the "anniversary of july 18." October 6 comes every year and has been since the beginning of time, and so has september 11. if we want to refer to the "terrorist attacks" of 2001, that makes more sense, because apart from anything else, the attacks were the work of terrorists. some think those terrorists who plotted and planed the attack are part of the bush administration.

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