If it’s true that 1/5 of American adults can’t locate our country on a world map, we are in more trouble than I originally thought. If it’s true that you don’t have to be intelligent to be successful in our country, you just have to look good—we are in double trouble. So what we have in modern-day America is a lot of beautiful idiots running around winning friends and influencing people.

Six years ago this morning, patriots and idiots alike watched as our own airliners, our planes flown by non-Americans that we let into our country, gored three of our greatest buildings. Our former symbols of protection and wealth billowed smoke for days, weeks. We felt shock, anger, and a new sense of national unity—for awhile. Cynics predicted that we would have short memories of these attacks. I prayed they would be wrong.

In each year since 2001, I wake up on the morning of September 11th and try to figure out what I should do. It’s “Patriot Day” on my calendar, but what does that mean? Do I wear red? Sport a flag lapel pin? It doesn’t really sound right to wish your friends “Happy Patriot Day”. There’s not much to be happy about when you remember the events for which it bears its name.

However, my first phone call of the morning was regarding September 11, 2001. We talked about those friends we had who were “supposed” to be at work but who mysteriously got sick to their stomachs and had a bad feeling about going in that day. Those folks lived to tell their stories and their lives are changed as a result. As we talked, I wondered about the victims of 9-11 who ignored their gut instincts. Did they deserve to die? How many of the dead had no inclination that this would be their last day? (I’d guess most.) So one thing that haunts me is that there probably were some people out of the nearly 3,000 dead who sensed danger and ignored it. Doubly tragic.

I feel an increasing sense of urgency to protect this great nation, this republic we were given, from slipping into the pages of history. My mind is constantly churning with things we should be doing and ways to communicate the true state of the union to the masses. I guess you could say that restoring our country is the constant bee in my bonnet, and will be the subject of upcoming blogs. In the meantime, it’s Patriot Day. Do something meaningful with it. (Perhaps you could show 1/5 of Americans a map! While you’re at it, point out Saudi Arabia. I hear they still have a lot of guys who want to be pilots.)