Today is the anniversary of 9-11. On Facebook and all around I hear various responses to this. I suppose it is because I have a well-rounded group of “friends” (I used friends in a loose sense to mean people I “know” merely through social networking). One post said something like “we must keep the memories of the younger generations sharp.” Well, I guess that must be me, as someone who was about 9 when 9-11 happened, I do remember it. I remember it as well as I want to. In fact, I remember it too well. I remember my hatred against “those people” who did such a thing. I remember my fear, “will they blow up all of America?” I remember my loyalty, “I’m not gonna let them destroy my country!” I’m ashamed of all that now. I was too young to realize the truth. I just responded the way I was expected to respond.
So, as a member of the younger generation: We don’t need to remember. We must move on. Yes, we must remember 9-11 as a tragedy. We must remember the innocent lives cut short. But that is all. None of this hatred, this purposeful stirring up of memories to kindle the fires of fear and hatred against “them.” What will that gain us? The world has enough hatred already.
We’ve been distracted. If I were more sure of my philosophy, I’d throw something in about the Hegelian Dialectic. But what I mean is this. The government has pitted our society against the Muslims. They’ve led us to believe that our mortal foe in this life are the Muslims who just hate us so much they can’t wait to murder us all. We are focused on this “mortal foe.” We don’t see the Patriot Act. We don’t see our liberties being taken away. Not by the Muslims, but by our own government. We’re so busy watching the stage-show that we don’t notice the pickpocket emptying us all of everything we hold dear.
Yes, there are Muslims who hate us, probably. But how much does that have to do with their religion and how much of it is caused by our foreign policy? Someone said something like this, “I won’t forget the killings. I won’t forget their IED’s. I won’t forget their beheadings, etc…” Likewise, we must not forget what Wikileaks has shown us. We must not forget the American drone attacks that kill innocent civilians in the mideast. We must not forget the slaughter of children, mothers, the elderly, the sick.
In order to survive, we must stop hating. Islam is a religion of hate because it is a religion of works. Christianity is a religion of love because it is a religion of grace. How can we bear the Christian name and yet hate those who need the grace of the gospel most?