September 11, 2019 marks the anniversary of a horrific event whose scars can still be felt 18 years later. Our nation and all it stands for was attacked. Nearly 3,000 innocent people tragically perished, and their families, friends and colleagues feel their loss each and every day.
But 9/11 was also about resolve, determination and hope. We saw this in the actions of the heroic passengers on United Flight 93, the fire fighters and police officers who ran into the twin towers and the Pentagon, and all the first responders. We saw it in all the brave workers — including proud OPCMIA members — who came to Ground Zero to recover and rebuild. And we continue to see it today in the courageous members of our armed forces in Afghanistan and elsewhere around the world.
We were reminded by the evil of 9/11 that we can take nothing for granted and that the freedoms we possess as Americans and Canadians can only be preserved through constant vigilance. That’s a lesson that applies to us as citizens of these two great nations — and as members of the greatest movement for social and economic justice in history. Let us resolve on this solemn occasion to keep fighting for what is right for the sake of posterity, so that those who come after us can enjoy the same freedoms and rights we hold today.
Daniel E. Stepano