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From the sunny side… Remembering that day

We are once again approaching the anniversary of a dark day in our recent history. Sept. 11, 2001 was one of those days that has become seared in the minds of many. That day immediately became one of those days when people always remember where they were and what they were doing as the events of that tragic day unfolded. I'm no different in that regard. I vividly remember where I was, how I heard of the attacks and how I felt as the events unfolded throughout that morning.

On that day, pure evil attempted to gain a foothold in our minds and on our culture. That day, evil people attacked and killed innocent people because those people simply existed. Those evil people feel that if you choose to have a belief system different from theirs, you must be destroyed. Those evil people hate anyone who might dare to simply disagree with them. That kind of evil hatred still exists today and is just as much of a threat as it ever was.

I have a tremendous respect and sense of gratitude to those who serve in the military and take on the job of protecting the freedom we enjoy, in spite of those evil people who would love to see a world in which people do not have the freedom to choose for themselves how they want to believe and worship. However, in the long run, I don't think the final victory over those evil people will be accomplished with guns and bombs. I believe the final victory will be won with kindness to others. I think the best way to stick a finger in the eye of those who would love to stir up more hatred and evil is to fight back with service to our fellow humans. The late Dr. Martin Luther King once said, “Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that.”

The challenge remains with us. It is a battle that will not be won quickly. It is a battle that each of us must make a conscious effort to win. Each time we choose to respond with kindness rather than wrath, the battle is one step closer to being won. Each time you hold the door for another person, the battle is one step closer to being won. Each time you give your pocket change to a cause that will help children, the battle is one step closer to being won. Each time you choose to give someone a kind word of encouragement, the battle is one step closer to being won. Each time you choose to greet someone with a smile, the battle is one step closer to being won. Each time you choose goodness and kindness over evil, the battle is one step closer to being won. This Sept. 11, “let's roll” and help win the battle.

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