Things that remain unchanged post-Sept. 11 |

Things that remain unchanged post-Sept. 11

A local firefighter proudly holds up part of the flag at Truckee High school Wednsday during a 9/11 rememberance. Colin Fisher

The common refrain following the Sept. 11 attacks and the subsequent patriotic fervor was “This changes everything.”

But time has taught us the lesson that our country can experience a ‘worst of times’ scenario, then pick itself up off the ground, and find a way to bring normalcy – even routine – back to everyday life.

The flag-waving and rallying after Sept. 11 gave Americans, old and new, a chance to look into our history and tap into the American experience – to identify with the philosophies of freedom and solidarity that define our country’s place in the world. But our strengths have shown brightest after weeks, then months, and now a year, had passed.

Although the terrorists dealt a serious blow to our economy and our national sense of security, America has found a way to rebuild commerce, keep employment on track, and jump start an economy that, for awhile, appeared to be spiraling.

And although we might be disillusioned at the site of an 86-year-old woman getting searched at the airport, we shrug our shoulders now, tempered by a little more patience than we had before.

Towns like Truckee have prospered in the last year, a remarkable achievement in light of the national circumstances. Our success speaks to the strengths of our national institutions, and local resolve not to run scared when we are challenged. People here and throughout America are still engaged in entrepreneurship, social camaraderie and civic pride. We care about each other and ourselves enough not to let terrorists win. The past year has taught us that they never will.

While Sept. 11 has changed a lot of things about the America, it hasn’t changed everything: We still have an unwavering, uncompromising love of freedom, and we will continue to live free every day.

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