Friday, September 9, 2011
"A decade ago, our country was thrown into chaos by strategic, senseless strikes to the very heart of our nation - not at the buildings that house our financial, political and military power, but at the people who put a face to the phrase 'American spirit.' None of us will ever forget September 11, 2001, or the people who were killed that day.
"In the hours, weeks, years following those events, thousands of people from all walks of life reached out in defiance of these horrific acts. Across our country, friends and strangers came together, first to comfort one another, then to rebuild our communities, and finally, to demonstrate what makes our country great. I would like to thank especially the first responders, men and women in uniform, and veterans who honor us with their selflessness. We owe them a debt that can never be repaid.
"A decade ago on the Capitol steps, lawmakers in Washington came together to say, 'We stand united.' Since then, the gloss of national grief has worn off to show a nation at odds. Not even the killing of Osama bin Laden could silence the bickering for long. Let us come together again and show that we can instead stand a nation united - not just under the cloak of tragedy, but in the hope of and with passion for building a better country for our kids. Let us make that the true legacy of those whose lives were cut short that tragic day, and of the people who have sacrificed since for a safer and stronger America ."