9/11 Didn’t Do That…!


     I am in no way trying to take anything away from the absolute horror that befell this country on September 11, 2001.

It permanently changed many things….

For America and the rest of the world, as well.

     The simple joy of greetings and farewells at the gate as our loved ones embark or disembark an airplane…

How innocent was that?

     We no longer carry certain things that we always took for granted…we now look askance at fellow passengers…particularly those who may be dressed in hijabs and burkas…

     All of these things are understandable, yet undesirable and now…we are undeniably more scantily attired with the Liberty in which Americans were once clothed.


9/11 did that…


        That mantle had already started to show the shiny wear of mis-use and the threads of Freedom had already begun to unravel under the constant friction of political correctness and ‘tolerance’.  Rubbed by the wear and tear of leaning away from our own personal tendencies and proclivities under the guise of not infringing on someone else’s liberties.

     It’s good to consider the rights and feelings of others but, we will not survive as a nation with two hundred million individual ways of judging wrongs…

And Rights

   There was a time, still in my memory, when kids would leave their homes on a hot summer morning , freed for a season from the rigors of formal education, and be gone until dark, when they would reappear with a jar flickering with ‘lightning bugs’

or an ‘arrowhead’, or a pretty stone or a feather that they had come across in the course of their daily adventures.

     Some days, they/we would come home with a scrape or a bruise or simply with the tired muscles that only sleep would rejuvenate…hungry for a bite to eat and a time of sharing the adventures of the day with the family.

     If a thunderstorm came up suddenly, most parents assumed that their kids had the sense to come in out of the rain…somewhere…

Or that someone would TAKE them in.

(or they realized that their child was the type who would take advantage of a summer storm to prove, or disprove, the myth that mud puppies (salamanders) would bite and only let go at the sound of thunder…)

     And Mom would simply have a few towels and some dry clothes laid out for the inevitable return of the adventurer.

     Can we send our kids out to who knows where, even if it’s in our own neighborhood, without constantly checking for texts or phone calls?

…without checking the sex-offender registry to see if our own back yard is safe?

…without feeling obligated to search the internet to see what manner of germs that feather may be carrying, or what history may have been violated by the simple discovery and pocketing of an arrowhead?

Cast off that article of liberty’s protection.

Are we ‘cooler’ now…

Or just cold?

Less weighed down…?

     Now we must be ever so diligently vigilant because the innocent child playing is afforded less protection than the predator who seeks them.

9/11 didn’t do that!

     On a cool Autumn Saturday, we would gather with the neighborhood boys, a football and a field of grass… find an empty lot, or someone’s large backyard, and play football for hours…sometimes smash-mouth football, at that…..no pads, no referees…

Often, somebody’s Mom would provide a lunch of peanut butter sandwiches and potato chips….maybe even some home-made cookies….


the boys are run off of the property….

“Someone might get hurt and sue me!”..

or the Mom may be held accountable for not checking to see if any of the ‘team’ had peanut allergies….

     And Heaven forbid that one boy should, in a universal act of sports camaraderie, slap another on the butt for making a good play.

Why… that is now assault..

Or bullying…

or a ‘hate’ crime…

Or sexual assault…

Who came up with these things?

(Sounds ridiculous, but I happen to know a case in which this very thing happened…)

9/11 didn’t do that!

     Little girls could walk alone down the street to go to a friend’s house, or be dropped off at the shopping center for a ‘girls day out’… maybe even have a camp-out in the backyard where dad might build a campfire for roasting hot dogs and marshmallows.

Better not build a camp-fire now in your backyard…!

     It’s against the law in most municipalities to recreate the thousands of nights that our history is built upon.

     And let your little girl walk down the street or around the corner to the ‘Mom and Pop’ corner market…?

(which by and large, no longer exists)…..

No one would allow that now.

     And if you did and something happened to your child, you would probably be charged with neglect for the idiotic premise of letting your child roam ‘free’.

9/11 didn’t do that!

     It was a custom, long ago and far away, for High School sports teams to gather for a prayer before a game.

I never heard one of those prayers that centered around the theme,

“Let us win!”.

“Lord, help us hurt these guys…!”

     No, they were about sportsmanship… fair play…..just a subtle, yet attention requesting hint of a reminder to teen-age boys that the WAY the ‘game’ was played was far more important than winning… a lesson that I’m sure every coach and parent hoped would permeate their sons’ daily undertakings..

And their future adulthood..

     Now, some…(and I’ll have to interject, some mis-interpreters of America’s Constitution) consider it to be against the law for any function relating to a school,

a ‘federally funded’ school…

(which is another story in itself)

to ‘condone’ prayer in any form…..

or, in a Christian form, I should say.

(Muslim prayer mats and schedules are accepted in my county’s schools,

but not a prayer to Jesus before lunch!)

     Do they (the misinterpreters) really think the High School football team, or that child at lunch, who is exercising his 1st Amendment right is trying to “establish” a religion? (Which, btw is what The Constitution ACTUALLY forbids the government to do)

     There is a big difference in establishing a religion and exercising one’s freedom of religion.

9/11 didn’t do that!

     There was a time when it was not just a custom, but an expected part of every school morning, for all students in America to stand and place their right hand over their heart and recite

“The Pledge of Allegiance”.

     Now… that might be considered ‘offensive’ to someone who really does not want to pledge their allegiance to the flag….????

Or even to the ‘imagined’ person who might be made to feel


9/11 didn’t do that

(Actually, I expected the events of 9/11 to bring that Pledge back into vogue, but, I’m afraid we may be too far gone…!!)

     Our fear of being labeled ‘intolerant’ or ‘racist’ or ‘xenophobic’ has now usurped common sense. The majority no longer ‘rules’…..

The “factions” now rule….

bringing to the forefront one of the greatest fears of our founding fathers.

     The louder the protest, the more cowering the guilt ridden.  The louder the protest, the more guilt ridden the cowering….

     In 1968, when “The Beatles” album (which we still call “The White Album”) was previewed on radio, before public release, my ear was glued to my ‘transistor’…. I cried when I thought I heard, in the last line of “Rocky Raccoon”….

“…to Hell with good Rocky’s revival…”

     I knew that I would never be allowed to own or listen to a record that displayed that kind of language.

     When my parents asked me what was wrong, I waited until the song was played on the radio again and expressed the cause of my dismay and asked them to listen….

They calmed my fears when they heard, rightfully,

“…to HELP with good Rocky’s revival…”

     Last week as I was pumping gas… Overly expensive gas… a young man emerged from the car on the other side of the pump, and along with him emerged an un-edited Eminem ‘song’ that slapped me in the face with its explicit anger.

…Talk about a chip on your shoulder…

     But, as the Indian, oh excuse me, Native American, proverb says…

“….walk a mile in my moccasins…”

     Anyway, this guy’s girlfriend…or wife…or maybe a prostitute or a hitchhiker, for all I know…

(Doesn’t matter who or what she is…when did chivalry evaporate?)

…was in the car and it was all I could do to keep myself from saying,

“Hey, man, do you not have any more respect for this woman than to subject her to this kind of misogynist, hateful, sputum…?

I didn’t, because…

     First, I ‘cowered’ to the fact that HE might be this hateful and think nothing of ‘offing’ me..

And, secondly, because…..

     I cowered to his ‘right’ to infringe upon MY ears…

     Though the Freedom of Speech which some would say protects his Right to subject any and all to his choice of music and words, is often, again, misinterpreted as not only ‘The Right to Speak’, but also,

‘The Right to Be Heard’


9/11 didn’t do that!

     And now, the ‘producers’ in America, the ones who go out and get a job and earn their living, are often subjected to drug tests, background checks, and other forms of inspection to earn the privilege to work…

The privilege to pay taxes to support their government…

     While at the same time, the ‘takers’, the ones who are being supported by the ‘producers’ have no such scrutiny.

9/11 didn’t do that

Where do we go from here?

     Is the grand experiment that became The United States of America bubbling over, flowing out of its test tube only to put out the flames of Liberty and Freedom that once beget the melting pot for the world, and infused the globe with the radiant sweet smelling fragrance of dreams?

     Ooops…I had better climb down off this soapbox for a minute.  I almost passed on the past post paste…


~ by rkpowers on March 21, 2012.

4 Responses to “9/11 Didn’t Do That…!”

  1. Another wonderful entry. You could have chosen writing as a profession! I am really enjoying getting to know this creative side of you.


  2. Randy, great article. You nailed it! Now am I just “cowering” or is it
    your writing provided “insight”? 🙂
    (Really though, I loved reading this!)


  3. Steve, I think we have all become ‘cowerers’…or is that ‘cowards’.? Too much emphasis is put out there by the ‘victimized’ or mostly by those who want to feel that someone else is a victim….my favorite example still is the brouhaha over ‘Hoops and Yoyo” in a Hallmark(?) card ,talking about the universe and they mentioned the “Black Hole”. After several years of this card being in existence, suddenly someone decided that they were using a racial slur. There are too many chips on too many shoulders. Maybe some of us should take a stand against Ritz and Saltines….!!! 🙂


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