The symbolism of the twin beams of light as they thrust skyward from the site of the now ruined but once majestic twin towers in New York is obvious to all who see them.
The first time I saw those twin lights on my television screen, I thought: what a wonderful tribute, what a magnificent way to celebrate and remember the lives of the nearly three thousand people who died there on 9/ll. As their families and friends know, those lights carry a heart-warming message of both encouragement and defiance that is far beyond the power of any of our well meaning attempts to comfort them. But, there is more to it than that.
In my lifetime, there was only one other occasion that compares with 9/ll. That was December 7, 1941, Pearl Harbor Day. I was fourteen years old back then. We first heard the news of the attack on Pearl Harbor as it was announced on our family radio that Sunday afternoon. The next day, everyone in my school gathered in the auditorium and together, we listened as President Roosevelt's declaration of war was announced to the nation, the world and us.
The sleeping giant, that was the USA, was awakened by the attack on Pearl Harbor. We went to war. Then, with the attack on 9/11, the sleeping giant was re-awakened. President Bush immediately declared war on terrorism. As we knew in 1941, and again in 2001, as one nation under God, we have a worldwide responsibility to fight for and defend the freedom of people everywhere...or else.
Back in WW2, and in today's 9/11, lives were both lost and changed. As Americans we will always enthusiastically rise to the challenge to: pray, work and support the God-given rights of all people, everywhere to live in freedom. This means, as citizens, we must enthusiastically vow to support patriotism, our troops, and our leaders.
Look again at the Twin Tower lights. Notice this: Americans placed them there. Americans turned them on. And, in addition, Americans aim them toward the heavens where God, who is the source of our strength, lives.
Remember, terrorism can only live in darkness. Light destroys darkness. Obviously, the awesome lights of those Twin Towers symbolize America's determination to destroy terrorism's darkness with light - so people everywhere can live in peace and freedom.