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Individual Courage



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"Speaking for myself, what happens next scares me far more than what
happened. Talking about events is
part of a healing process, and while not topically related to this list, is
very important."

For this comment as well as those from others, I am indeed grateful.

Ironically, George Mitchell spoke on September 10th at St. Bartholomew's
Episcopal Church NYC regarding his book about Northern Ireland called
"Making Peace." Most of his comments are timely in the face of what happened
on the 11th. He suggested two lessons learned from his years of "listening"
and then helping construct "The Good Friday Agreement."

First: (and I summarize) There is no such thing as a conflict that can't be
ended by human beings because it was created by human beings. There must not
be despair that settlement is unattainable and it is up to our leaders to
create confidence and hope.

Second: There must be no yielding to men of violence. Diplomatic meetings
(and journalistic activity) must not be disbanded because of the threats of
terrorists. The courage, patience and perseverance of ordinary people is
necessary to encourage our leaders to this same course of action.

He went on to say that the strength of America is in our ideals, not our
military power or our economic prowess. In listing the most important of
these ideals: individual liberty, equal justice for all, and true
meritocracy guaranteeing the "opportunity" for success for all, he
encouraged us to participate in the art of real "listening."

Today, I will make books for each of my sons, one who is alive and living
with death in Manhattan, and the other who wonders from a far in Colorado
what will be the next steps. The books will commemorate the events of the
11th and offer hope, not despair, for our future. As individuals, we can do
something.

With great appreciation for this list and all who participate,

Ann E. Grasso

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