11 September 2012

BRIEF THOUGHTS: Or is it "We Will Never Forgive"?

"A soldier with a 9/ 11 tattoo stands with other soldiers with U.S. Army Able Company, 3-509 Infantry Battalion inside protective shelter during an afternoon rocket and mortar attack on Combat Outpost (COP) Zerak on Jan. 22, in Zerak, Afghanistan. Getty Images / Spencer Platt" http://blogs.sacbee.com/photos/2010/01/life-in-afghanistan.html

Read more here: http://blogs.sacbee.com/photos/2010/01/life-in-afghanistan.html#storylink=cpy
Eleven years after the US tragedies of September 11, 2001, on bumper stickers, on checks, on Facebook statuses, and from the mouthes of strangers and acquaintances I often still see and hear the words "We will never forget".

In the solemn hours and days following the event the words served as a memorial to those lost and a reminder to ourselves not to forget them. But in the years following I read and hear them differently. The understandable defiance implied that "We WILL never forget even though some people tried to erase you", in my opinion, has shifted. And, if I'm right, I'd say it shifted not long after the dust settled.

Today and in the years following that day, when those words are delivered in any of their mediums, I most often don't understand them as "We will never forget". Instead, I understand them as "We will never forgive".

It's not true for everyone who uses those words, maybe especially for those who lost a personal friend or family member that day. Then again, I'm not one of them and so I, hopefully, can never know. Nor do I judge them as I am not in their place. But, I just wonder if this is what this phrase means today.

If it is about forgiveness instead of forgetting it is high time for those of us to admit it, consider a rephrasing, deal with what we are coping to, and the condition of our hearts on the matter.

Here are my two cents culled from my own lyrics:

know there was smoke here
where fire raced 'cross the land
A sight to permeate fear.
It serves to forgive and not forget"

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