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The Villages
Monday, September 27, 2021

Our nation’s greatest loss since 9/11

To the Editor:

September 11, 2001 stunned America. The attack on the Towers, Pentagon and United 93 resulted in the greatest loss of life to our first responders from a single event in our history. End of watch for 344 NYFD heroes and 71 law enforcement officers at the Towers, one law enforcement officer on Flight 93 and 55 military personnel at the Pentagon.
As of 2013, medical authorities reported at least 1,400 additional rescue workers had died among those exposed to toxins at Ground Zero. At least 1871 deaths among our Nation’s Heroes over 12 years.
As a Nation, we required nothing less than “all hands on deck,” a united front demanding we respond with every weapon available. We expected all to Support Our Troops even those who might not support a war.
We demand that those heroes willing to sacrifice their lives, if necessary, be equipped with the most advanced weapons and personal protective equipment America has to offer.
September 11 is now Patriot Day.
As we remember those who gave all that we might continue to live in relative peace against terrorists who attacked from the sky, let’s also remember we are under attack from an enemy that like the terrorists has no National allegiance and attacks from the air – COVID.
Unlike our response to 9/11, we have been slow to demand a unified front against a common enemy. We were not prepared to provide personal protective equipment to our front line workers.
“Lost on the Frontline” was a yearlong study documenting the more than 3,600 US health care workers who perished in the first year of the pandemic.
In September of 2020, Remembering Fallen Officers reported 225 line of duty deaths were caused by Covid. Covid killed more officers than all other line of duty deaths.
COVID is now the monster that comes to steal our way of life and kill us in our homes.
So why when the enemy has brought the fight to us, are we failing so miserably? Why when we have weapons that will protect our heroes, ourselves, our families and our communities are so many refusing to take up arms against this enemy?
On September 11 and every day Americans have been asked to be prepared to defend our country, “unselfish” has defined Patriots.
Take a moment September 11 to remember. Give thanks. And ask yourself if you are truly a Patriot. Are you fighting with every weapon available or are you giving aid to the enemy? Do you have your brothers’ and sisters’ backs? They swore an oath to give their lives if necessary to save ours. They ask you to mask up and get vaccinated. A small ask of warriors.
As of September 9, 2021, the U.S. has recorded 649,299 COVID deaths. Clearly, what we’ve done to date – fight each other instead of COVID – isn’t working. We can keep fighting each other. If that’s your choice, I suggest you ask yourself: “Who is benefitting from our failure to fight against a common enemy by dividing us?”
Nature is a powerful enemy. However, to date, it seems we are doing a fairly good job of destroying ourselves. Sadly, if we hesitate too long, COVID mutations may make our best weapons – Moderna, Pfizer, J&J – as useless as dewormer, chlorine injections or miracle spring water.
Every great democracy has destroyed itself. Seems we may be ready to implode.
Patriots Day. A simple prayer of remembrance: “All gave some. Some gave all.” What are you willing to give to defeat COVID? Maybe you can start with Rule 51: Sometimes you’re wrong (Gibbs, NCIS).

LaVonne Joyce
Village of Bonnybrook


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