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Point of View: Sept. 11 has brought the nation together

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The Sept. 11 carnage has made the United States the most unified country with people from every corner on the globe. Despite differences in color of skin and religious beliefs, they are all proud of being American. A great majority of them back the U.S. military action against Afghanistan’s Taliban regime that harbors terrorist leader Osama bin Laden and his followers.

The American flag is seen everywhere. Three are flying in my front yard. And “I love America!” echoes in the air and in the streets. Young people are rushing to apply for jobs as air marshals, FBI and CIA agents to combat the terrorists bent on killing Americans and destroying our economy.

In some respects, the United States is much safer now than before because our law enforcement forces are watching over all vital ports, bridges and water reservoirs. What’s more, Americans are heightening their alertness on terrorism.

Recently, President Bush released the Most Wanted list of 22 terrorists. Their mug shots should be posted on walls across the nation to help people apprehend the evildoers who may have hidden in our neighborhoods.

Residents in College Point conducted a field day Oct. 14 to show their patriotism. They poured into MacNeil Park by the Hudson River to pay homage to the World Trade Center victims, including the fallen heroes — 500 police officers and firefighters, who sacrificed themselves to help 25,000 workers at WTC escape from the crumbling Twin Towers. They will forever live in our hearts. The Cardalises should be thanked for generating a huge turnout at the event.

Six weeks after the devastating attacks, life in Manhattan — at least above 14th Street — almost returns to normal. People are responding to Mayor Rudy Giuliani’s call to visit the Big Apple. Times Square is bustling again, and restaurants in that area are packed with customers. A lot of tourists were seen visiting Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum on 42nd Street. On the other hand, lower Manhattan will take a longer time to recover. Chinatown, a sightseeing spot close to the ill-fated WTC, has lost 50 percent to 70 percent of its business, according to the Sinovision, a Chinese-language TV Channel.

Unfortunately, anthrax spreads fear in New York and the nation’s capital. The U.S. House of Representatives closed for a week. The action immediately affected nervous investors, and the stock market plunged sharply. Is it another scheme of the terrorists?

Mayor Giuliani gets high marks from the public for his outstanding performance directing the relief work at Ground Zero. He was urged to seek a third term, and he said he would think about it. But the state law set a two-term limit for this position. When the state legislators balked at modifying the law for him, the mayor toyed with the idea of running on the Conservative Party line.

However, after a poll showed 55 percent of New Yorkers were against his bid for a third term, the mayor gave up the idea for good. It was a hard but wise decision. He would have won a greater respect for what he had achieved if he had turned down the third-term suggestion when it first came up. In a democratic country like ours, no one is indispensable.

The mayor should be commended for refusing a $10 million donation to WTC relief from Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal because of the billionaire’s statement criticizing American policy in the Mideast. But the prince, the sixth richest man in the world, said the mayor did it under “Jewish pressure”!

Most New Yorkers probably know the mayor is undergoing prostate cancer treatment. He should take advantage of his forthcoming retirement from City Hall to improve his health. At 57, he’s relatively young — I think a brighter political future still lies before him.

Our country is great because of its unique political system, which attracts millions of people around the world seeking freedoms and job opportunities. After World War II, colonialism came to an end, and new nations have mushroomed. Many of them model their government systems after ours. Why? Because our nation’s founders knew more than 200 years ago the dangers of monarchies, dictatorships, and theocracies, and fashioned a constitution which, with only a few adjustments, remains vital and relevant in the third millennium — now more so than ever before.

Posted 7:25 pm, October 10, 2011
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