America’s Security Threatened

n the wake of this American tragedy, you all will read hundreds of articles and editorials, and watch dozens of hours of television about the terrorist attack of Sept. 11. But please read this as you would anything else, because it is important to listen to each other. Feel free to write letters to the editor about anything you read in this issue.
One newscaster, faceless in the sea of reporters and anchors that spoke to the public via the television the night of the attack, was sharing his thoughts on America’s freedom. He noted that although, by and large, we are a free society, terrorist attacks, foreign and American, have made us what we did not want to become.
He recalled the days of the 1950s and 1960s when a person could drive pass the White House and beep to say hello to the president.
He remembered what it was like to drop in on a senator and not have to pass through a metal detector.
America is the most free society in the world, but still we have to place restrictions on our freedom. In 2001, a person can no longer drive past the White House and if a person shouts or waves to the president, it may be taken as a threat. Senators and other officials must have metal detectors because of the all too real possibility of a gun-toting radical bursting through the doors.
Children all across America aren’t fazed by seeing metal detectors or policemen at their school. But in this day and age, when six year-olds are packing heat and 15 year-olds are shooting their teachers, it is important to take those precautions.
All these security measures can also be seen as a society changing with the times. However, after last week’s attack, things will never be the same again. The continental United States has never been attacked before. Our sense of security has been threatened and in some cases, destroyed.
For years to come, whenever we see a plane flying overhead, we will look up and wonder who is at the controls. Residents and visitors to New York will continue to be amazed at the shortened skyline. We are now a country at war that has been transformed into a nation not unlike those seen on television across the Atlantic.
We will hear horror stories from victim’s families and survivors for years to come and it will be important to listen to every last one. Those stories will help to light the fire inside us all. Our patriotism and love for our country is a powerful force. We will tell them- no more.