SANTA MONICA, Calif. – The trilling of the phone woke me from a dead sleep. “Hello,” I groggily answered. “You have to get into the office right way. A plane just struck one of the Twin Towers in New York,” the panicked voice said.
I rushed into the office and watched as a second plane plowed into the South Tower of the World Trade Center. You all know the rest. Rudy Giuliani, the man who fought the Mafia and won, steered the Big Apple back to the proverbial center of the world. American citizens rallied around Giuliani and New York regardless of their political affiliation.
Giuliani united us, as Americans, while protecting democracy.
That was when Rudy Giuliani really stepped onto the world stage as an important leader of the Free World. I covered press conferences that Giuliani held and was proud to be involved as a media professional.
I later crossed paths with Giuliani while producing coverage of Iranian exiles living in the United States who protested against then Iranian President, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The demonstrations took place at the United Nations Building in New York, on the streets of Paris, and in London. Giuliani supported the protestors against the repressive Ahmadinejad regime.
Giuliani stood as a symbol of freedom and democracy by taking a stance against Ahmadinejad.
What happened to Rudy? How did he fall from being America’s Mayor and a protector of democracy, to being considered a laughingstock by some and a traitor to the Constitution by others? How did Giuliani become such a divisive character?
Regardless of where you stand on the political spectrum, dear reader, you have to admit that Giuliani’s fall from grace has coincided with our inability to unify as a country. The United States is experiencing a division never before witnessed.
We now live in a country where, because of the last six years of political turmoil and divisiveness, family members don’t speak to one another. Life-long friends have dissolved friendships and strangers are willing to do harm to their fellow countrymen for no reason at all. In a Keyser Soze-esque way, the previous politician who was in the White House warned us that “the other guys” were trying to “divide us” which seems to have been his original goal all along.
Let’s not stand for it. Let’s be the best versions of ourselves for our country, family, friends, and global community. Let’s remember our unification is as simple as remembering we are, “one nation, under God, with Liberty, and Justice for All.”
Some reference and informational content courtesy of Newsweek and Millercenter.org.