WORDS FROM OUR READERS - The Day Of Terror - September 11, 2001

(09/19/2001)

We are encouraging our readers to express their thoughts, feelings and opinions about our national tragedy. If you have not done so, please e-mail us at bob@hurherald.com or FAX at 304-354-6183 or snail mail at HC65-Box 120, Mt. Zion WV 26151.

Please remember that the opinions expressed here are strictly of those who wrote them.

I am writing to echo the sentiments expressed by Debbie McKown. Her opinions ring true in my ears. I have witnessed more "Jerry Falwell followers" in the past week than I care to think about. In the face of adversity there he is to turn this into a campaign of religious rhetoric.

The majority of the Christian fundamentalists have turned this tragedy into a Christian vs. all other religions debate. I for one have had the wonderful experience of travel and witnessing other religions and systems of spirituality. The most important gift I have received is knowledge. Most religious rhetoric is based on fear. When one carries knowledge fear can be released.

When I have had the experience of participating or studying different religions I have walked away with a sense of understanding. Realizing that all religions have a fundamental belief in their God. Yes, they may call him by different names but the belief is in a higher power. Even the so-called "Pagans", as Rev. Falwell casts a shadow upon, have a belief in God or Goddess.

I am worried that this country is so very concerned with which God people pray to that they forget the message. What has happened to our country is because we, as a society, have allowed it. We have become lax in our national security and our knowledge of the world around us. How many of us have ever tried to understand the Koran, to know that acts of savagery perpetrated on our citizens, is not what the Koran or Mohammad teaches.

I know the push is on to have prayer in our schools or to have the Ten Commandments posted. But I ask you, if a child of Buddhist or Hindu beliefs were to enter your school system would you be as willing to push for his freedom of religion? Would you be willing to post the Gita or the Koran on the wall? Or is it best to allow these teachings in our homes and churches or places of worship? Remember when you fight for religious freedom you fight for all religious freedom.

If we wish to remain a land whose religion is true to its beginning we would follow more closely the teaching of our Native American's. After all did we not invade his land?

I beg you to remember that we need to stand together as a nation of diverse backgrounds and know that fundamentally we are all fighting to eradicate factions of people who wish to take away our freedoms…Shannon Smith,Southern Pines, NC

I am a former resident of Calhoun County, I now live on Long Island in New York. On the morning of September 11, I had just returned home from a double shift at work when my boyfriend called and told me to put on the TV. You can imagine my horror when I saw the twin towers on fire.

I live about 45 minutes from "Ground Zero" and, while I am sure this event scared the citizens of Calhoun County, I was terrified. I stayed glued to the TV all day, praying that there would be more survivors found and praying for the ones who had been lost. I realize a lot of people think New York is a hostile place, filled with rude people but you would be amazed how everyone here has pulled together to help one another.

The donations from organizations and people were tremendous, people were actually turned away at blood donation centers because the centers could not process the blood quickly enough. Most of the vehicles and houses here are displaying American flags. It's a shame that it takes such a tragedy to bring out the best in people.

I was reading the archives tonight and I was so impressed, but not surprised, by the outpouring of help that citizens of Calhoun County are displaying. I traveled through NYC this past weekend and what was once the World Trade Center is completely gone from the skyline and it brought tears to my eyes.

I can remember as a child going to the city with my grandparents and walking down the streets of Manhattan, with my grandfather telling my brother and I all the names of the buildings. I remember looking up at them and being amazed at such structural marvels. My children will not get to do that. I am not a violent person but I do feel the person(s) who masterminded this attack on our country should pay.

I have heard people say it would be horrible if the US bombed a country and innocent people and children were killed. It would be, but there was absolutely no consideration for the innocent people and children that were in the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. No consideration of the families of the victims. The current count of the missing in the World Trade Center is 5422. I think it is truly time to rethink about bringing prayer back into schools. I see signs all over, everyday now that say God Bless America. Where were these signs a week ago?

I am also bothered by the hostility some people are showing to people of Mid- Eastern ethnicity that live over here and mainly work in convenient stores and gas stations. The people working in the 7-11's are not the people paying for flight lessons and becoming pilots. They are people just like you and me, struggling to make a living and to keep a roof over our heads. The majority of them are wonderful people. It's going to take a long time for New York and Washington DC to get back to normal. The volunteers are doing a fantastic job and I pray that they will rescue more survivors, but after almost a week, the possibilities are becoming grim.

I just wanted to say thank you to the citizens of Calhoun County for all the support and thank you, Bob, for keeping me informed of what's going on down there. I hope to visit next month! God Bless America and the citizen's of Calhoun County!...Lisa Haviland

Submitted by Eva Chapman

I am submitting a poem that my niece, Sara Walker of Munday, WV, wrote for one of her college writing classes in regard to the terrorist attack last week.

Listen-
Eerily silent,
All signs of life lies smothered under intentionally dug graves.
The pain-
Oh the pain!
My heart aches
I hear cries for help, ringing from coast to coast,
Yet, I'm so far away.
Questions, "Why?" thunder in my head,
Relieved by distant sounds of soldiers' feet,
marching solemnly to war.
Tears stream like rivers flow,
and prayer reassures the frantic souls.
While others stand hopeless, their lives changed forever,
gathering pieces that that lie shattered.
Searching, waiting, listening as time rolls on,
as unanswered prayers scar their souls.
Will there be an ending, when peace cries out?
or my friend-
Is this just the beginning,
the Bible speaks about?

Sara Walker

Well, first of all, I want to say that my thoughts and prayers are with those that have lost loved ones in the WTC Attack and also on the Attack of the Pentagon. All of the people that have died and missing are all GREAT HEROES. I have debated with myself over writing a letter or not. I know that not everyone (if any) will agree with me. But I finally have decided that everyone has an opinion one way or the other. So I am hoping that I do not upset anyone with this.

I want to say that ALL of America are thankful that we have the type of Firemen and Policemen that we do. They are putting their lives on the line everyday that they go out on a call or emergency, whether they are paid to do this job or not, It makes no difference. I know that I am very very thankful for those people.

As to whether prayers in school would make a difference or not, that is not the issue. The issue is this. If Bin Laden is the one that has brought this terrible thing to the US or not. The person that was and is behind this has tried to pull us Americans further apart, but it has had the opposite effect. We are all pulling together as we should have been all along. It really upsets me that we were nice enough to let those people come to our country and go to our schools to learn how to fly OUR planes and then they turn our teaching against us. Where is that right? It isn't.

If we find that Bin Laden is guilty we should just go there and blow them to kingdom come, then use equipment to flatten what is left and put a huge American flag there and claim it as American soil. We have to show these kind of people that they can't do this and get by with it. We should also CLOSE all of our borders to anyone from other countries. If we don't let them in they can't do these horrible things. As for the ones that are already here, we can clean our own backyards of the trash that has found its way here.

I know that two wrongs don't make a right. I know that what I have said sounds cruel and unjust. But we have to do something and it seems that this is the only thing that these kind of people understand. The Taliban is acting like a bully when its says that they will attack any country that helps us take them out. That is so childish.

I will never forget Sept. 11, 2001. My daughter was still in bed and we had her get up to see all of this destruction that was taking place. We all watched history being made. Our children that are still too small to understand what has been going on they will learn about it from their History books.

Well I guess that I have had my say. I want to thank you for giving us this forum to do this... Norma Mowrey