A minor caveat to my thoughts below about the mainstream media's tack on remembering 9/11. The nambi-pambiness of much of our media hyperventilation about 9/11 is an entirely different issue than Christian forgiveness of our enemies and those who have wronged us. One is a fundamental truth based on millenia of hard-earned religious teaching; the other is an intellectually-easy, demand-free, Big Rock Candy Mountain-Doctor Feelgood Liberalism coming out of pot-fueled dorm-room bullshit sessions of the 1960s.
Today in Mass our priest talked about forgiveness, putting the 9/11 attacks in the context of the Holocaust, and Simon Wiesenthal's book on forgiveness. How could a Jew who survived Auschwitz forgive Germans? How could the wife of a firefighter who died on 9/11 forgive Osama bin Laden? But he didn't shrink from the Catholic doctrine of a "just war" either, and he openly argued that forgiveness and punishment, forgiveness and justice, were not mutually exclusive. It was a serious homily with a serious message. The problem with our liberal mass media is that they are quick to forgive crimes but also quick to forget the need for justice and punishment and continued vigilance in the protection of innocents. In other words: Not Serious.
On the other hand, the Mass did include a prayer in remembrance of 9/11 that included the following:
May your gifts of peace, love and forgiveness transform our hatred, anger, and fear, so that peace on earth will be possible once again.
Not sure I'm too happy with that. Most Americans aren't consumed by hatred, anger and fear toward Islam. But the reverse is unfortunately not true. I think we ought to first pray that the hatred, anger and paranoia of Islamists around the world toward the West should be transformed.