Located in rural Somerset County, Pennsylvania, the Flight 93 National Memorial honors the 40 crew and passengers of United Airlines Flight 93 who died on September 11, 2001. The flight was hijacked by terrorists who intended to attack Washington, DC. The plane crashed in a field near Shanksville after passengers and crew fought back against the terrorists who had taken control of the flight.
For me, 2017 has been a year in which American freedoms and ideals have been under attack. What a difference fifteen years can make. When Brooks and Dunn released Only in America in 2001, it was a celebration of diversity and dreams. As they sang: Everybody gets a chance to dance. It is so sad that the United States has fallen off its pedestal under the current administration, and the fall is accelerating. Fear and isolationism have become the new watchwords. During the 2016 presidential campaign, I learned a hard lesson. Many Americans not only don’t share my worldview (well, I knew this but I didn’t know the breath of the chasm), they want to devolve to a time when racism, misogyny, and religious intolerance were both accepted and promoted. I can’t understand how reasonable Americans gleefully admire a president who has no intellectual curiosity, accept alternate facts without question, promote lunatic conspiracy theories (the latest: the US has established a colony of children on Mars for research and pedophilia), devalue education and ignore science, and brand hate filled messages and threats across social media as patriotism.
Someday, I hope the United States can again aspire to be a place where everyone can dance and dream.
I have included two links to each song incase the official music video doesn’t work in some countries.
On the 4th of July, it is important we remember those who have served to keep as free so that we can dream. I love Ray by Billy Cyrus’s 1992 song Some Gave All, in the days he still had a mullet. Its message is one we must remember. Some gave all for everyone, not for one party, not for one social movement, not for one religion, not for the few.