September 11 Digital Archive: XML Document

Local Union:

Story:I work at SEIU Headquarters in DC, but I was at a conference in NYC on the day of the attacks. I felt the hurt and sadness all around me in the city for the day and a half that I was stranded there. It was as tangible as the chemical smell in the air. I came home to DC by train, as the airports were all still closed. Many people in Penn Station voiced concern over the lack of security there in the chaotic crush of people trying to leave the city. Sure enough, our train was halted for a bomb scare as we approached Newark. One thing that became very clear to me, is that we cannot 'police' our way to peace either at home or abroad. The freedom we cherish can only be achieved with a basic level of good will. No amount of police presence could 'secure' Penn Station or most of the public spaces we travel through each day. Our society 'works', because people feel they have something to gain and something to lose. We need to think about what it is that drove the terrorists to such acts of desperation. True Peace is not merely the absence of violence, but the presence of Justice.


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