A headline last week in USA Today forced me to think about the first anniversary of the horrific terrorist attacks on America in a new way, but with thoughts I've been harboring for some time.
For those who missed it, the newspaper's Life section cover story headline read, ``Enough. As the anniversary of the terror attacks approaches, some say they can't bear to see it again.''
The Crain family has allowed any of our employees to honor, remember and/or react to this Sept. 11th in any way he or she deems appropriate. The message was, in effect, take all or part of the day and do whatever seems right to you in remembrance of the worst attack on our nation in its 200-plus years.
I believe many people share the thoughts of those quoted by the newspaper, who don't want to face the 24 hours of wall-to-wall media coverage of this event.
However, I believe there are more who understand that memorializing the event, along with reporting on what has happened in the past year to secure our borders, could have some positive effect as well.
Part of that, quite honestly, could come from my being a journalist for all my adult life. It also could come from my beginnings at Kent State University, when Ohio National Guardsmen killed and wounded students on campus my freshman year.
I've long believed that remembering that tragedy was far more positive than trying to ignore it as some sort of shameful embarrassment.
Kent State has done that by bringing together speakers of national renown each year on May 4 to discuss why such a thing should never be repeated. There are programs about nonviolent change, as well as looks at the news media's role in societal change. Much good has been done as a result of the yearly memorials.
While they certainly are dramatically different events, the Kent State shootings and last year's terrorist attacks share a common thread: Both were tragedies that, if remembered appropriately, could reap positive results.
For example, Sept. 11 would be a perfect day for a president to report to the American people on our successes (or shortcomings) in homeland security.
It would be a great time for interfaith services led by Christian, Muslim and Jewish religious leaders. Our universities could be effective settings for dialogue about the rewards and risks of racial profiling done in the name of security.
Several people quoted in the newspaper story said they didn't want to ever again see the images of those attacks on the Pentagon and World Trade Center.
To them, I would only offer this advice: Don't watch television. The lethal people behind such attacks are still out there, plotting ways to harm our country and its people. To ignore the events of Sept. 11, 2001, because they make some feel uncomfortable would be to invite a lackadaisical return to normalcy, which must never happen.
The news media are a powerful force, and if we take the positive with the expected negatives (namely, the repetitive and sometimes superficial coverage), Americans can make sure that Sept. 11 will be etched in our memory as much for good as it was for evil.
Mr. Tucker is the publisher and editorial director of Crain's Cleveland Business, a sister publication of Tire Business.