I remained quiet on 9/11: I didn’t do a blog post, didn’t do a podcast, I just watched. I wanted to see if anybody and who would begin a process to alter history. It didn’t take long.
The first time I saw Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) reference the 9/11 attack on New York as “…we know somebody did something…..” was the first time I understood what the word “globalization” meant. It meant that there really are millions of people in this nation who feel like (and prefer others to feel too) that in this modern United States we are no longer citizens of a country, but are citizens of the World. And to that end, our government should not create and implement any policies whatsoever that consider the needs of American citizens over those of other countries — especially for illegal immigrants that want entry into the United States “to be safe.”
Think about it: news headlines on the 18th anniversary of the attack on New York actually stated that the airplanes initiated those attacks: not hijackers after storming plane cockpits — not terrorists, not Islamists, but planes! I a couple of days ago as did millions of others recalled that morning when in 2001 I sat in my office and was informed of the attack of the first plane. I quickly turned on my television and watched in horror as the second plane flew into Tower Two. I remained riveted for hours trying to understand what was happening. That day, I never thought “how could those planes be so evil?” Planes didn’t kill anyone. Terrorists did. No one gave this year’s news headlines a thought on that day in 2001.
Television news coverage in 2001 seemed unified. Flipping from channel to channel and watching reports hoping to hear some “good” news, there was one thing and one thing only that came through on every news report: America was under attack. That day there was no partisanship, no political agendas, no sparring about political policies. The only thing that mattered to every American was our country was under attack.
Facts Remained: News Reporting Did Not
On that day it didn’t matter if you were anchorman Tom Brokaw of NBC News or a rookie reporter at a small-town newspaper, you were faced with a crisis you never before experienced or could have imagined. The decisions that were made in newsrooms across the country have left a lasting change in how the news media covers stories to this day.
Looking back on reporting that and subsequent days, however, something in news reporting began to change: slowly and methodically. And it has continued and has heightened in intensity since. The attacks needed no creative writing to make them appear worse than they already were. However, in the days after the attacks, David Westin, the president of ABC News, ordered that video of the jets hitting the World Trade Center in New York City not be repeated over and over so as not “to disturb viewers, especially children.” That was a landmark decision, considering how many times Americans had been exposed to a video of the Space Shuttle Challenger explosion and the assassination of Pres. John F. Kennedy. Before then, if you had a good video, you usually exploited it. Today, news organizations are re-examining coverage of violent stories, such as mass shootings. Some are deciding that even when a video is available, it is too graphic to put on TV.
In all fairness, many dramatic stories that are important and should make the news, are accompanied by a pretty graphic video. And, in all fairness, many probably are forever sketched into the minds of all those who see them. But should members of the media –especially television — be the sole arbiters of what audiences see and hear? Are Americans so numb in their lives that they all feel life-changing mental anguish when there is a mass shooting, floods, hurricanes and tornadoes when television video shows actual happenings? After all, bad stuff happens almost daily in every city in America.
It began shortly after 9/11 that news editors got more hands-on on news stories reported. Slowly but steadily news reporters and columnists and their political perspectives began to influence the news — not just what was reported but how it was.
It is true that the internet, smartphones and amazingly user-friendly video cameras are in every woman’s purse and man’s pocket that can and do capture almost immediately each such incident. It is true that the ability to transfer through the internet these videos to various news sources gives editors many more story choices with the added video attractions. But is it true that now an overseeing newsgroup takes unilateral control over programming content? I think no one can argue that news editors and publishers pretty much choose what we see and hear based on THEIR needs and desires and not ours. But should it be that way?
Here’s another consideration: Remember the U.S. flag pins that politicians and newscasters began wearing shortly after the attacks? At first, they were seen as a sign that America would stand strong. Before long, critics said they were being used to show political support for the policies of President Bush. Reporters with news organizations that would never take a political stance were faced with a dilemma—keeping the pins on may make it appear that the journalist was supporting a political agenda. Taking them off could look un-American. ABC was one organization with a policy that specifically stated the pins and other symbols could not be worn.
The pin flap has faded, but the patriotism battle continues over a cable TV channel. Al Jazeera English (AJE) presents reports from a Middle East perspective, offering Americans a look at how people in another part of the world views us. Even ten years after 9/11, cable TV companies reportedly worried about a backlash if they offered the channel.
Once the nation saw the faces and read the names of the 9/11 suspects, it became easy to target people of Middle Eastern ancestry or Islamic belief as possible terrorists. News organizations chose to actively fight that stereotyping or saw an opportunity to pander to it. Fox News Channel has been accused of playing to Americans’ fears of Muslims. Others in media are criticized for assuming that all terrorist acts since 9/11 are committed by Muslim extremists. People who do bad things come from many different cultures, religions, ethnicities, and political affiliations. Evil seems to be pretty open to everyone and anyone who wants to join in can take that opportunity.
There’s a new country under construction. The “old” United States of America has been dismantled piece by piece. No, it didn’t come apart at the hands of a conquering foreign military or of Islamist terrorists hijackers. It did not result from ravaging economic devastation. It came at the hands of a political system that progressively fractured the U.S. piece by piece from within — and at the hands of its own people.
Sadly, that force that split the nation in half resulted from an internal political battle between a large part of a populace who wanted a national government that snatched control of every part of the nation’s existence. Their belief is that a strong and small nucleus of people which control every piece of the government can more effectively and more fairly take care of its citizens than could the previous government that was elected by the people as a whole.
There’s a new culture in America that is steering the country further left than I ever suspected I would see in my lifetime. I don’t think I need to spend much time proving to you that it’s happening. But few (including me) can believe it has happened so quickly and so demonstrably as it has. As this story is prepared, Democrat presidential candidates are on stage in Texas verbally destroying the fundamental constitutional operations of the U.S., the current president, and each other — all on radical, heretofore “other” countries’ political structural ideas. These 10 candidates plus the handful not on-stage are pretty much in lock step on one thing: the “old” version of America is no longer good enough. Instead of constitutionally steadily and thoughtfully proposing and making any changes they want, they demand immediate and drastic changes not done constitutionally.
The U.S. of my childhood apparently went the way of corduroy pants, penny loafers, and overalls. None of them are “applicable” and “appropriate” anymore.
The time left until the 2020 election will determine how America is going to move forward. But, maybe “moving forward” is an oxymoron in this case. Those 20+ want the U.S. to walk away from most of the structure that enabled us to get to where we are. Who can realistically argue that our country looks anything like it did shortly after the surrender of Japan aboard the USS Missouri in the Pacific. America has changed. They and many other Americans expect more and more drastic changes to quickly follow.
In closing let’s remember this: our founding fathers gave us several ways to alter/edit the template used to establish how the United States is governed: the U.S. Constitution. Many of us are wondering why none of these presidential candidates has even floated amending the Constitution as an option. They want radical and immediate change.
Something that none of them and few others of that mindset realize: anything used other than the Constitution cannot happen in the political structure of the United States. The Rule of Law cannot exist in any environment in which a ruling class rejects even part of a set of laws. Without laws and without adherence to the laws agreed to by a majority to rule a country, no such country can exist.
Is that what today’s Democrat Party wants? If so, what specific alternative type of government do they propose? Wouldn’t it be better for Americans to know where we’d be headed with a new president AND a new form of government in 2020?
Don’t be so crass as to answer these questions with, “That could never happen in the United States!” There’s no way two hijacked airlines could take down both of the World Trade Center towers in a space of a couple of hours either.
If enough Americans want a government overhaul, it can possibly happen. But don’t be naive: not a one of the 2020 Democrat presidential candidates if elected has even a one percent shot at making changes like it would take for that “overhaul objective” to be even marginally successful.
If something like that happens we will all be a part of the generation that lost the greatest political structure in the greatest nation in World history. Sadly, if that happens, it will happen primarily because a fawning, angry, obstructive, and Democrat-controlled political party (including their media henchmen) will have been successful in the achievement of their one and only objective: to destroy Donald Trump. And it they are successful, all of the U.S. and the World will be forced to acknowledge those to blame for the fall did not attack from other countries. They will have attacked and destroyed a Representative Republic that purportedly is controlled democratically through a 535 member governing body and that Congress allowed it to happen.
God help us.