September 11, 2023

Today is the 22nd anniversary of the September 11th Terrorist Attacks on the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York City; on the Pentagon just outside of Washington, D.C.; and for Flight 93 that crashed near Shanksville, Pennsylvania. The attacks killed 2,977 people — more than 400 were police officers, firefighters and first responders. September 11, 2001 — 9/11— stands as the deadliest foreign attack on United States soil since the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941.  In the years following, The World Trade Center Health Program has reported that over 71,000 individuals have been diagnosed with physical and mental health conditions brought on by exposure to the dust, smoke, debris and trauma of the 9/11 attacks. Additionally, the FDNY announced that almost another 300 first responders have died from the aforementioned post trauma illnesses.  The United States Department of Defense lists 2,462 servicemembers as having died in Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Freedom’s Sentinel. Of these, 1,926 were due to hostile action and 536 non-hostile.  We also cannot forget the September 11-12, 2012 Benghazi attacks which resulted in the deaths of four Americans, including the U.S. Ambassador Libya.  We also remember and mourn the13 brave American service members and the more than 100 innocent Afghan civilians who were killed during the chaotic withdrawal from Afghanistan.

Most of us can remember exactly where we were when that first plane hit the Twin Towers—despite not recalling what we were doing last week.  The stories of those who died or lost loved ones have become a part of our shared history.  But at the distance of spanning over two decades with many of our young ones not even being born yet in 2001, what else do we remember from that day? What are the things that still stand out and command our attention twenty-two years later?

One thing that stands out for me 22 years later is how our communities — across the country — came together. This is a stark contrast of where we are as a nation today. With little known about the organization or people behind the attacks, we united to care for one another, to support one another and faced uncertainty together. On 9/11, we appreciated the words of the Pledge of Allegiance, “I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”

Like the rest of our fellow Americans who were present then, that day changed us forever. Perhaps it is even more important now for “We the People” to recall that as recently as 9/11 we knew what it was as a country to come together and to confront the things that might divide or destroy us. Because sadly, Joe Biden, who campaigned on unity is completely incapable of Making America Great Again and his weaponized government villainizes those that do. 

As America observes the 22nd anniversary of the deadliest attack on U.S. soil, Joe Biden will travel to a military base in Alaska following the cancelation of oil and gas leases in a federal wildlife refuge that were bought by an Alaska state development agency in the final days of former President Donald Trump’s term. Additionally, the Biden administration has forbidden new leasing on more than 10 million acres in the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska, a 23-million-acre area on the state’s North Slope that is the largest undisturbed public land in the United States.  But has pledged to invest $520 million to make Ukraine’s energy infrastructure ‘cleaner, more resilient, $665.5 million in security assistance and $206 million in humanitarian assistance. It comes as no surprise when you put America Last, drain our Strategic Petroleum Reserve and make us energy dependent, oil prices have hit a 9-month high amid supply concerns. As we have come to expect with Bidenomics, Americans are already seeing rising prices at the pump with the current average national price for a gallon of regular gasoline sits at $3.83 as of Sunday morning, according to AAA. That is slightly higher than a week ago when prices were $3.81 a gallon. In addition to the international supply cuts, AAA spokesperson Andrew Gross said that “hurricane season and its threats to Gulf Coast oil and gas production and refining” are also playing a role in increased prices.

As I reflect on this infamous day, I have come to realize that history is still being made each day — by all of us—by the way we live our lives and how we conduct ourselves in difficult times. By how willing we are to put the needs of others before our own. By how well we love each other.  9/11 is forever engraved in our history. But how we respond to its impact is still being written, 22 years later. Now it is our history to make.  Let’s all of us “Live History in the Front Row” together by holding our elected officials accountable for promises made and promise kept, ensuring FITness – Faith, Integrity and Trust in our elections and voting in record numbers to save our communities, the great state of Georgia and the United States of America.  It is time to #VoteDeKalbRed because #AmericaDeservesBetter. 

Today, let’s pay tribute to those who took the fight to the enemy and sacrificed to protect and defend our freedom, and never let Sept. 11, 2001, fade from our memory. #NeverForget. Thank you.

 With Best Regards,

Marci McCarthy, Chairman, DeKalb County Republican Party

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