A Few Words About September 11, 2001

As a technical expert, I may not be the first source anyone turns to for political or moral analysis. However, it’s important to me that I take a stand now and offer hope to anyone I might touch. I am an individualist and an egoist. Ultimately, it is for myself that I write this.

The terrorist attack on September 11, 2001 was the most ugly expression ofhatred for life in history. The World Trade Center was more than a place ofbusiness. It stood for the abundant creativity and productivity capable by the
best human beings. The buildings themselves demonstrated the wonders we can create when we apply intelligence and determination. The organizations within them demonstrated that rational people never have conflicted interests: the degree to which your are rational and moral is the degree to which you prosper.

Contrary to intuition, the experience of beauty is an active, creative process. Just as the creator must labor to instill his worldview into his work, so must the viewer labor to understand and fully appreciate beauty. A beloved landmark radiates the goodness inherent in human life, but you must choose to see it. You can choose to see a simple pathway between San Francisco and Marin County, or you can experience the graceful beauty and refined structural engineering of the Golden Gate Bridge.

The artist reveals a self-portrait with every creation. Lady Liberty holds her torch high because French artist Frederic Auguste Bartholdi valued freedom. When Ayn Rand concludes her novel, The Fountainhead, with her hero Howard Roark standing atop his the skyscraper he created, it reveals her profound respect for individual achievement. As rock-n-roll artist Chuck Berry sings about a “brown-eyed, handsome man” winning a baseball game with a home run, he tells us he knows that despite every disadvantage, people rise as heroes.

Each of us has one supreme creation: our own lives. Each action we take reveals our character. When we are kind, we recognize the value of life in ourselves and in others. Cruelty is a betraying mark of those who hate life. We’ve seen the ultimate consequence of hating life: suicide, murder and terrorism. This lesson of history repeats itself as we give in to the temptation to allow the haters of life to exist.

It’s easy to be confused by the love of life and knowledge of the goodness inherent in all people. More than once in history, people have allowed evil to grow because they could not accept that some people hate life so much. How many times have we turned away as unthinking monsters devour the innocent? Why did it take so long for freedom-lovers to defend against Nazis? How many of us have let others express the poisonous epithets of racism before us without a word of protest? This turning-away, this blanking-out of supreme ugliness is a sanction for evil. Evil deserves no mercy; of evil we must remain intolerant.

Evil can only win with our permission. Evil is impotent against the moral individual willing to defend himself. Evil is destroyed by vigorous promotion of freedom and truth. Humans are born to love life and to flourish. Those few who turn away from life exist only by the grace of us life-lovers. When an individual chooses to reject life as the highest value, they surrender their humanity. These beasts are no longer human. Destroying them is a life-affirming act of kindness to humanity.

These first days are darkest, but reject fear and guilt. You deserve to be happy. You choose life. It’s always moral to pursue joy. It’s always moral to destroy evil. The fundamental laws of nature do not change. Our eyes are open, and we have a grim task at hand, yet hold hope close to your heart. Each time evil has risen in the past, good prevailed. We will overcome this and all challenges.

One Response to “A Few Words About September 11, 2001”

  1. James Hughes says:

    Leon ,

    Thanks for the 3rd edition for core php programming. Congrats on a 3rd edition which is a huge accomplishment. I have a coffee in hand and downloaded the examples and ready to read this book. So far it has saved me in several instances.

    I worked at the world trade center exactly where the airplanes hit at the world trade center in mid 1990’s. Thanks for your writeup. Many of the people I worked with died that day. It seems there is alot of mystery still about that day. I was here in chicago.
    There are many attacking the branches of evil, but only ONE attacking the root of evil.

    Cheers
    Jim Hughes

Leave a Reply

Subscribe to RSS Feed Follow me on Twitter!