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In Romans 6:1 the Apostle Paul asks the question: What then are we to say?

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By Hardy Brown

What shall we say, or do when trying to gain insight into what happened September 11, 2001?

It seems as though no one can find the appropriate thing to say or do during this time. This senseless act of terrorism leaves reasonable people in awe wondering how people could do such a thing. On the other hand, we praise the numerous acts of heroism as ordinary people reacted with courage and resolve to this unexplainable act of cowardice. We praise the response from the world community toward the victims and their families. Although we recognize that no matter what we do, we can never replace their smiles, the way they said hello, the way he or she would come home after a day at the office, or the many other ways we remember relatives or friends. So, like Paul, what shall we say then?

What shall we do to make our lives more meaningful in response to this act of violence? In a conversation with Rev. Marvin Brown, pastor of the First Baptist Church of Perris, he suggested that the answer rests in the knowledge of the true and living “God our creator.” Rev. Brown said, “He (God) created all of us and if we do not recognize his authority we are all doomed. No nation has maintained its number one standing in the world when they removed their direction from following the Almighty, and America is no exception."

One of the things we must do as Black Americans is to become more involved in the debate over what America should or shouldn’t do in our humanitarian efforts toward the families of the victims. This debate is too important for us to sit on the sidelines. We must also educate ourselves on America’s foreign policy. Much of the hostility we experience from other nations is not unwarranted.

So back to Paul’s question, what shall we say then? We must say whatever we feel based on our own understanding and experiences. We should get involved by contacting our government representatives and letting them know what is on our minds regarding these issues. We should talk to our spiritual leaders and let them know how we are doing and what we need from them. Consult your Bible. A year after such a tragedy we should really be asking ourselves “what shall we say and do to begin new life?”

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