Updated and bumped: I wrote the following last year on September 11. Sadly, nothing has changed since then. President Obama is still trying to sell the idea that this day should be used as a day of service, something that misses the point so completely as to almost be despicable.
So, I think it is worth repeating what I wrote on September 11, 2010:
The President has asked us to consider today “a national day of service and remembrance”. Though the sentiment seems reasonable, I must respectively disagree.
September 11 should not be turned into a day to celebrate volunteerism or service or American charity. Though these values are profound, important, and an expression of much of what makes our nation great, they are not why we remember September 11.
We remember the evil acts commited on September 11, 2001 in order to remind us that there is evil in the world.
We remember these evil acts so that we will have the strength to fight that evil, with every fiber of our being.
We remember those who died in order to prevent future attacks and further deaths.
We remember so that no one can ever try to make believe these events did not happen.
We remember so that no one can spread the lie that the perpetrators were something other than what they were: Men who had decided to kill in the name of Islam, based on what they believed their religion taught them.
And finally, and most important, we remember the horrible events of September 11, 2001 so that those innocent murdered souls — whose only crime that day was going to work — will not have died in vain.
Now available in hardback and paperback as well as ebook!
From the press release: In this ground-breaking new history of early America, historian Robert Zimmerman not only exposes the lie behind The New York Times 1619 Project that falsely claims slavery is central to the history of the United States, he also provides profound lessons about the nature of human societies, lessons important for Americans today as well as for all future settlers on Mars and elsewhere in space.
Conscious Choice: The origins of slavery in America and why it matters today and for our future in outer space, is a riveting page-turning story that documents how slavery slowly became pervasive in the southern British colonies of North America, colonies founded by a people and culture that not only did not allow slavery but in every way were hostile to the practice.
Conscious Choice does more however. In telling the tragic history of the Virginia colony and the rise of slavery there, Zimmerman lays out the proper path for creating healthy societies in places like the Moon and Mars.
“Zimmerman’s ground-breaking history provides every future generation the basic framework for establishing new societies on other worlds. We would be wise to heed what he says.” —Robert Zubrin, founder of founder of the Mars Society.
All editions are available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and all book vendors, with the ebook priced at $5.99 before discount. The ebook can also be purchased direct from my ebook publisher, ebookit, in which case you don't support the big tech companies and I get a bigger cut much sooner.
Autographed printed copies are also available at discount directly from me (hardback $24.95; paperback $14.95; Shipping cost for either: $5.00). Just email me at zimmerman @ nasw dot org.