Editorial: You can change the post-9/11 world — if you want to

Editorial Board


probably remember where you were and what you were doing when you

heard about the terrorist attacks. Ten years ago, we joined the

ranks of people who remember the same details of Dec. 7, 1941; Nov.

22, 1963; and Jan. 28, 1986.


members of the Editorial Board were in many places.


Lovett was waking up from an outpatient procedure at a



Belding was standing in line to catch the bus from his elementary

school to his middle school.


Hanton was also standing in line waiting for a school bus when a

younger neighbor told him the news; that morning’s cartoons had

been interrupted.


Stoffa was in art class, painting a picture of Wall



Peterson was at school in homeroom class.


Vriezen was at home. After going to a friend’s house, she saw the

towers’ collapse.


you stumble around at the Iowa-Iowa State game this weekend or go

about your daily life, consider this: 10 years ago, the people of

this country were attacked and jolted out of their innocence. We

were whipped into a vivid understanding of how dangerous our world



terrorist attacks joined the bombing of Pearl Harbor, the

assassination of President Kennedy and the explosion of the space

shuttle Challenger as events that remind us that ours is a

dangerous world.


discovered that the United States is not insulated from security

issues. We experienced on one day the violent, unpredictable

features of daily life in countries such as Israel and Lebanon.

Now, thousands of soldiers daily run those same risks so we don’t

have to here at home.


our post-9/11 world. After the events of Sept. 11, 2001, we all

understood sacrifice with clarity. We were a unified nation,

everybody was patriotic.


single-minded unity is dangerous. Treason is a grave accusation.

Dissent is a part of our political inheritance, not disloyalty.

Political witch-hunts against the indispensable opposition should

not be in our repertoire.


memories of 9/11 to frighten and intimidate is an insult to the

memory of those who have died in America’s service since then. If

our post-9/11 world is different from the one before it, it isn’t

because 9/11 changed us. It is because we changed it. Our world is

what we make it. It’s a matter of choice.


innocence may have been shattered and malaise may plague us a

decade later, but this country was founded on the idea that we can

remake the world. Centuries after that founding, having withstood

many crises of faith, we can do so again.