Scoot: Americans are divided – but quick to unite!

September 11, 2017 - 1:10 pm

The attacks on America by Hurricane Irma over the weekend and recently Hurricane Harvey remind us that nature can be our enemy. When we are attacked by nature, like a storm, we witness vivid examples of how Americans are willing to unite and help each other with no regard for politics or socio-economic status.


Sixteen years ago today, America was attacked by another type of enemy – terrorists – and the attack on September 11, 2001, united Americans.


Over 3,000 lost their lives on September 11, 2001, but America also lost a sense of security. The terrorist attack was the first time an enemy had launched a massive attack on American soil since the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941.


Any attack from nature or an enemy force unites Americans behind the idea that we are one. Sadly, that feeling is short-lived; and it doesn’t take long for individuals to retreat back to their partisan positions.


While it is easy to be critical of the fact that uniting in the wake of an attack does fade quickly, there does seem to be the sense of a lasting unity that is easily rekindled.


Even before the torrential rains of Hurricane Harvey ended in south Texas and in anticipation of Hurricane Irma over the weekend in Florida, Americans were already uniting behind the concept of helping fellow Americans.


We love our political debates and are responsible for America’s great political divide; but it is comforting to know that when help is needed, we do put our political and socio-economic divisions aside.


It would be nice if we were united all the time, but that is not a realistic expectation of human nature. The positive news is that we do unite when we need each other.


Remembering this may help us understand that the things that divide us are not as great as the things that unite us.

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