09/11/12 — Our job: Remember. It will never be the same for us. But we can honor those lost.

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Our job: Remember. It will never be the same for us. But we can honor those lost.

It isn't as hard for us.

We aren't the ones remembering family members lost when the Twin Towers fell or when a plane hit the Pentagon.

We are not telling our children stories about the father they never met who died trying to take back a plane from terrorists near a small town in Pennsylvania.

And we are not members of the military who will forever mourn the comrades who lost their lives as this nation fought battles in Iraq and Afghanistan in the aftermath of the attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.

That is not our burden. And no matter how much our eyes might well up with tears at the thought, we can never really understand what it was like or what it will be like every Sept. 11 for the families whose lives were changed forever that day.

Our job is simpler, but no less important.

We have to remember.

We have to remember when the going gets tough in the Middle East.

We have to remember when politics gets mixed up in the military's efforts to defend and protect this nation.

We have to remember when foreign policy becomes apologies rather than strength.

We have to remember when it matters.

As the decades go by, the pain of that day in 2001 will be not as sharp. We will look back with sadness, but not with the same resolve that brought this nation together on that fateful day and in the days after.

And that is what we must guard against.

Sept. 11 is an important date for many reasons -- not the least of which is that it is a reminder that this nation has a great reservoir of heroes. We owe it to them not to forget and to carry forward the cause for which they gave their lives. It is critical that we remember, we listen and we protect this nation and its people in their honor.

Courage is their legacy -- and our duty.

Published in Editorials on September 11, 2012 11:06 AM