Summary: Are we safe since 9/11?

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INTRO.- ILL.- A backwoods boy was about to make his first parachute jump. His sergeant reminded him, “Count to ten and pull the first rip cord. If it doesn’t work, then pull the second ripcord for the auxiliary parachute. After you land, our truck will pick you up.”

The paratrooper took a deep breath and jumped. He counted to ten and pulled the first ripcord. Nothing happened. He pulled the second ripcord. Nothing happened. As he headed toward earth he said to himself, “I’LL BET THAT TRUCK WON’T BE THERE EITHER!”

Brethren, Some people are afraid and some people should be afraid. Since the terrorism of 9/11/01 many things have happened to increase the fear of the American people. Most of these things took place in 2001.

ILL.- A Greyhound bus crashed in central Tennessee. At least six people were killed after a passenger slit the throat of the driver.

ILL.- Monday, Oct. 7, 2001 - A passenger tried to enter the cockpit of an American Airlines plane. A young man, described later by his father as having history of mental illness, was subdued by passengers aboard the flight from Los Angeles to Chicago after trying to get into the cockpit.

ILL.- Jim Furlan and his wife, Cheryl, waited at Chicago’s O’Hare Airport for the airliner that would take them home to Los Angeles. Jim was OK with flying, but "a bit queasy." There was no way Cheryl would get on a plane - except that their two daughters, ages 3 and 5, awaited them. "I feel sick," she said.

ILL.- Estelle Faryon, 64, of Winnipeg, Canada, a visitor to San Diego, was on a cruise when she caught herself looking over the ship’s rail and watching a fishing boat approach. "I was watching to make sure it didn’t come too close. It never did that before," she said.

In the aftermath of the terrorism of September 11, 2001, many people are fearful about many things. What about us? Should we fear anything at all? Is fear normal for human beings? Is fear normal for Christian people?

ILL.- A recent article asked the haunting questions, “Will we ever feel secure again? Or are we destined to become a nation of people, fearing a marketplace where jetliners fall from the sky and other yet-unknown horrors await us?”

Joseph D. McNamara is a research person at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution. He is something of an expert when it comes to terrorism and how to deal with it. McNamara concedes there is a threat to be dealt with at home.

He said, “First, you have to realize there is no absolute protection terrorists,” he says. “You cannot prevent them. I doubt you can, even if you have the National Guard search every truck in the country.”

“When you have a huge crowd, and when you have people standing up and singing ‘God Bless America,’ this is a target,” he says.

“There is no way an average citizen is going to look around and say, ‘That guy looks like a terrorist,’” he says. “If you see someone put down a suitcase and walk away from it, go tell a security guard. Odds are about 1,000 to one that somebody absentminded just forgot their suitcase.”

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