On family: Every year since 9-11-01, with the exception of last year, I took my kids out of school. September 11th isn’t a holiday. You don’t get to eat cake or open presents. It is a day to reflect upon our freedoms. It is a day to ponder what it means to be an American. It is a day to mourn the loss of thousands. A day that many will not forget and a day to teach your children…at home: What does freedom mean? What is the price of freedom? Who are Americans? What does being an American mean? There’s more to September 11th than death and destruction and terror. There’s more to teach than just right and wrong and religious freedom. There are punishments for those who abuse their freedoms. There are punishments for those who abuse religion. And for the past few years, I’ve made attempts at teaching my children…because they were so young when the terrorists struck….because America has changed so much since the beginning of Afghanistan and Iraq….and because large sacrifices have been made in the name of freedom for many of us (Americans or not American) by anonymous, unsung heroes. Freedom isn’t free.
This year Patriot Day falls on Saturday. School isn’t in session today. Last year they both wanted to go to school when given the choice. They’ve grown up quite a bit since 2001. Back then, they were learning to write sentences and were way too young to totally understand the consequences of the day. They are still learning. I have great hopes for them both. America is young, and I have great hope in her, too.