Dear Friends in Peace:
We face another September 11th without our loved ones. The time widens. In it there is healing; yet the rift also widens as more days, more hours that should have been spent together have been lost. The rifts are deep within and echoed around us. We sense the divides growing that wrench us from one another as people, as families, as nations.
It is a culture of fear and hate that drives a wedge between us. It shifts into so many forms pulling us so far apart that it becomes difficult to recognize one-another’s humanity. Easier to launch wars, pull a trigger, strike a target, instill terror.
We hadn’t thought that we would internalize that divide. We thought we would stand united. Everyone made that pledge. It was to be united for, not against one another. Yet here we are dividing children from parents, religion against religion, race against race, ideology against ideology.
But if fear and hate can lead to such devastation, then the trust and compassion we witness everyday offer an antidote drawing us together. Young and old are gathering at the borders of our physical and virtual communities to break down the divides and offer mutual support. Our allies, the Afghan Peace Volunteers, show us the way offering Global Days of Listening as they explore “Why not friendship instead?” This 9/11, we visit communities in Charleston ravaged by hate-driven gun violence who want to walk together with us seeking reconciliation. Those who have been interned in Guantánamo for so many years foist upon us their humanity, exhibited in their artwork, which we proudly and tearfully shared while persisting in our efforts to advance justice and return to a humane, effective, and transparent rule of law.
Your support of us, of one-another, and of our efforts is ever more appreciated in these times that so urgently call for unity. We reach out to you on this commemoration and find your responses mend our wounds and offer the path to more peaceful tomorrows for everyone.
September Eleventh Families for Peaceful Tomorrows