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We Are Better Than This

We Are Better Than This

Opinion
2 min.
September 14, 2021

Dear Editor –

On September 11, 2001, we united as Americans, unified in the faith of freedom and dedicated to protecting it at all costs. Today, we face monumental challenges once again--challenges that test whether our freedoms and our spirit can survive.

We are a house divided. It’s time to come home, America.

Think back to September of 2001. In the wake of the greatest terror attack in our nation’s history, we came together. Our friends, family members, and neighbors put their lives at risk to defend America. Hundreds of thousands joined the military. Enlistment among young Americans increased by 8%. In record numbers, we proudly purchased and flew flags. Petty differences seemed just that—petty.

It’s hard to believe that was 20 years ago. It’s even harder to accept the precipitous decline in our national unity since.

Americans are more divided today than at any time in recent history. A recent poll showed that 31% of likely U.S. Voters say it’s likely that the United States will experience a second civil war “sometime in the next five years.” Nearly half of Americans would be upset if their children married someone of the opposite political party.

The pandemic set back our children’s education years, cost too many of our friends and neighbors their livelihoods, and killed thousands of Americans. On top of all this, we saw violent protests, homegrown terrorism, and irreverence for life.

We are better than this.

It’s time to come together again.

Let’s keep our communities safe so people can get back to work and get back to the business of coming together as Americans to propel our nation forward. Let’s return freedom to people to control their own destinies. Let’s learn to understand people with whom we disagree.

As we reflect on the events of September 11th and honor the innocent who lost their lives, it’s important to remember who we are and what we believe. We are the authors of our future. And we must show through our actions that we are still the last best hope for humanity.

Ryan Owens

U-W Madison


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