Providing Comfort on 9/11, With an Eloquence Entirely Borrowed





A central theme wove through the words of the political leaders who spoke at the Sept. 11 memorial service this week. It was an ancient concept: We are our brothers’ keepers.

“Can I see another’s woe, and not be in sorrow too?” Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg said. He also said, “We cannot live for ourselves alone. Our lives are connected by a thousand invisible threads.”

Former Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani said, “Just as despair can come to one another only from other human beings, hope too can be given to one only by other human beings.”

Former Gov. George E. Pataki of New York said, “The moment we cease to hold each other, the moment we break faith with one another, the sea engulfs us and the light goes out.” From his successor, Eliot Spitzer, there was this: “Any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind.” And Gov. Jon S. Corzine of New Jersey spoke of time’s passage. “For those who love,” he said, “time is eternity.”

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