By Scott Thornton
After an overload of horrific images on Sept. 11, 2001, and several days thereafter, the censors plaguing American with politically-correct broadcasts and everyone-wins mindsets took over.
Since then even the best media outlets have searched for uplifting, hopeful stories in the carnage. The lone survivor from the World Trade Center floor number something. The brave firemen who saved many and sacrificed their lives for others. The inspiring construction of what stands in the place of the WTC now.
All are valid, emotional stories; some inspire, some are feel-good pieces.
But for my money, I don’t want anyone in the United States to never forget the melting steel after two fully-loaded aircraft carrying hundreds of passengers and thousands of pounds of fuel just itching for a spark intentionally hit the towers. Supports and cement meant nothing after a little time as temperatures melted the steel frame and reinforcements.
The rest was ripped to shreds by what many would call “lunatics” or “crazy men.” Soon enough on Sept. 11, 2001, the world watched as these fine buildings crashed to the ground, but not before dozens jumped out of windows 30+ stories up to escape immense heat and toxic fumes.
Those who jumped, at least, died their way — not in an insane man’s inferno. And for those fleeting seconds as their bodies fluttered in the wind, they forever seared in my mind an image as clear as JFK’s assassination, as clear as the Pearl Harbor bombing, and as eternal the signing of the Declaration of Independence.
Those who jumped were, indeed, brave souls. I am not a fan of gross pictures, video or terrible events. But we, as Americans, must not forget this event. Nor should be play if off as a one-time rarity.
To me, the jumpers implied, at least to me, that “everyone-wins” scenarios are useless today. And politically-correct talk should be stuffed in a turkey and cooked beyond recognition.
No, sir! There will be no happy meal today as we cheer the fact we were not in New York that day. So we survived — big jelly beans! Now make something unique and significant of your time on this planet. Make up for the good people who died an unspeakable way on Sept. 11, 2001 by helping those who remain.
Do not go quietly to your next planned event on Sept. 11 or any other day. Watch the fire, the jumpers, the planes plowing into two buidlings and the millions of affected lives. And always remember that pain. Let it push to take positive action everyday. Hug someone who was there. Comfort them if you like “feel-good” stories.
Life can be ugly. Do not run from ugly — it’s all around you. If you drive a new car, consider yourself blessed. But step up and help the thousands of people within arm’s reach of you who cannot afford to buy milk every week. They cannot afford to go to the doctor or to keep a job if they repair their dying automobile.
If all you look for are stories to make you feel good, you are missing a main point in this world. Help the less successful people to climb out of that pothole. They are scared to ask you for help. But you can do so much for them in just 30 minutes. That will make you the star of a fel-good event.
And by making them a meal or tying their shoes, you also improve yourself by learning to relate to the many, many people who live a low-income or middle-income life. Even $60,000 a year is hardly a good wage today, and the median income in the United States is far lower than that. Imagine that.
Help others daily, and you will be more understanding, generous and relatable. And never again, can you be categorized as “out-of-touch” with society’s needs like so many wealthy political candidates do. God Bless the little people who do the hard work with their hands.