America United. America Rising. America Fights Back. The terrorists expected a response to what they did. But did they expect our spirit? Who knows whether Taliban and company predicted our defiant solidarity and spirited fellow-feeling in the wake of their attack. Americans have surprised themselves. Despite all our typical and often bitter contentiousness we are united at a certain rock-bottom level. All those disagreements still exist, and should. And let’s keep talking.
But underneath all that, there is a sense in which all of us Americans are united. In response to the attack on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, we feel a sense of kinship and solidarity. Misery, yes, but also a rebellion against the misery. No matter what, we want to live. And America is a place where people can live, better than in a great many other places in the world. We can because of the abundance of material wealth here, which we have because of the abundance of freedom we enjoy, notwithstanding all the roadblocks the busybody bureaucrats and politicians plunk in our path.
In America, we can make ourselves a to-do list and then, for the most part, we can actually go about doing the things that are on the to-do list, crossing them off one by one as we go along. Try doing that in China or Afghanistan. Ask an Afghan woman what’s next on her to-do list. The American dream is the dream of life, the chance to pursue what makes us happy. America is for people who want to live. And can.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.