Sifting through a box, I ran across a Dixie Chicks CD. The angst and separation of war seeped through its case, the controversy, the shouting...After this 9/11 anniversary, are we on the mend?
I couldn't understand why I was having trouble writing yesterday. I had a few stories floating around in my brain, but when I sat at the computer... blinking cursor. Hoping for inspiration, I grabbed the leash to take Snowy for a stroll on the crisp pre-fall morning. I came back inside, sat in front of the computer... crickets.
And then it happened, a cool breeze wafted in through the open patio door. I looked out and up to the swaying treetops and cloudless blue sky. And then I remembered. I looked down at my date calendar: September the 11th. The weather was eerily like the morning of the tragedy in New York City when the terrorists flew their planes into the World Trade Center, the field in Pennsylvania, and the Pentagon, killing nearly 3,000 people.
It almost felt sacrilegious to write about anything but the tragedy, or at least memorialize it. While sitting back and thinking of that morning, little tidbits of recent inconsequential moments started to append. The beautiful scarf I saw earlier this week with the label "Made in Vietnam;" Anne Frank's diary; and a Dixie Chicks CD.
I realize as a nation and part of the human race, we forgive.
As I touched the beautiful hand-woven scarf and saw the label "Made in Vietnam," I felt goosebumps crawl up my arm. I recalled the documentaries and movies of the bloody battles and maimed bodies the Vietnam War left behind. A war indecisive in years, documented by most to have spanned two decades. Yet by 2010 we were trading with Vietnam to the tune of $376 million a year. According to Economy in Crisis, the United States was the second largest importer of Vietnamese shrimp in the world in 2010.
And before that, there was Japan and Pearl Harbor. According to the "Japan-United States relations" page on Wikipedia, "The U.S. has been Japan's largest economic partner, taking 31.5 percent of its exports, supplying 22.3 percent of its imports, and accounting for 45.9 percent of its direct investment abroad in 1990."
Today, although U.S. participation in the war in Afghanistan is over, we still have infantry and national guardsmen fighting Taliban forces and trying to stabilize the country.
A July 22, 2012 Huffington Post article reported: "KABUL, Afghanistan -- This year's pullout of 23,000 American troops from Afghanistan is at the halfway mark, U.S. Gen. John Allen, the top commander of U.S. and NATO forces, said Sunday in an interview with The Associated Press."
The greed and lust for power of a few doesn't necessitate hating a whole nation.
I thought of the beautiful words written in the diary of Holocaust victim Anne Frank: “How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.” And it has already started.
Then, there's this CD. I was sifting through a box looking for a lost business logo when, what's this? The Dixie Chicks. Wow... I had forgotten all about them. I packed their CD away when I tired of the mudslinging that resulted from Dixie Chick Natalie Maines' controversial statements about our president, like the feud with singer Toby Keith on their opinions and positions on the war in Iraq. I realize now that it had less to do about what their opinions were and more to do with the fact that I just wanted to begin healing without the bickering. If I had owned a Toby Keith CD at that time, I would have done the same with his.
I buy music for music's sake, not for the personal lifestyle or opinion of the artist. If that were the case, my music collection would be quite sparse, especially considering that the list of wayward, outspoken, and opinionated musicians goes way back.
I popped the CD into the player. These gals are incredible. I saw a neighbor strolling past the patio near the pond and fought the urge to turn the volume down. I realize we have come along way and then again... not. There's a stigma attached to the CD that time will have to erase. But darn they're good. I guess that makes me a closet Chick.