Star Parker: It’s Time for National Soul-Searching

After the attacks on our nation on Sept. 11, 2001, President George W. Bush took to the airways to address the American people.

Speaking to a nation in shock, he cast what had occurred in the framework of good and evil.

“Today, our nation saw evil,” the president said.

And he offered up solace in Psalm 23, “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil for you are with me.”

Several days later, a number of evangelical pastors, including Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell Sr., picked up on the theme of good and evil, reward and punishment, and suggested we must look inside of our nation as well as outside. We must check ourselves.

Pat Robertson issued a press release, as was reported in The New York Times, saying, “In a country rampant with materialism, internet pornography and lack of prayer, ‘God Almighty is lifting his protection from us.'”

These pastors got major pushback in the country for suggesting that this horrible occasion provided good reason for self-examination, and Bush, himself a born-again Christian, disavowed the pastors.

The White House issued a statement saying: “The president believes that terrorists are responsible for these acts. … He does not share those views, and believes that those remarks are inappropriate.”

Of course, no pastor questioned who actually committed the acts of terror. They suggested that, along with the actions we take against the terrorists, we must also check our own moral state of affairs to try to understand why such a horrible act of violence could have been successfully carried out on our own soil.

We might recall that the pilots who flew those planes, transforming commercial airliners into lethal weapons, trained in our country.

And while these preparations in our own backyard for what occurred on Sept. 11, 2001, were taking place, the president of the United States, Bill Clinton, was preoccupied committing adultery in the Oval Office.

Now here we are, 20 years later, having spent more than $2 trillion in our operations in Afghanistan, with a loss of some 2,400 American lives. The Taliban, against whom we launched hostilities in 2001, is back in power. By some estimates, their control in Afghanistan is broader than it was in 2001.

Maybe today, as the United States withdraws from Afghanistan in despair, shame and confusion, and as we note 20 years since the loss of 2,977 American lives to terror in our homeland, there will be greater appreciation for doing some national soul-searching.

We needn’t just turn back to the admonitions of a few evangelical pastors 20 years ago. We can turn back 225 years to 1796, to the counsel provided to a young, new nation by its first president, George Washington in his farewell address.

Washington reminded his countrymen that theirs is a country rooted in eternal truths and warned about detaching from those truths and allowing the nation to deteriorate into raw politics.

“Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports. … Let it simply be asked: Where is the security for property, for reputation, for life, if the sense of religious obligation desert the oaths which are the instruments of investigation in courts of justice? And let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion. Whatever may be conceded to the influence of refined education … reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle.

“It is substantially true that virtue or morality is a necessary spring of popular government.”

Over the last 20 years, as a nation, we have moved further from these truths. Under President Joe Biden’s leadership, we have politics, secularism and moral relativism on steroids.

Let’s understand that we will have no clarity abroad until we get our house in order at home.



Photo credit: Pict-your (Creative Commons) – Some rights reserved

Star Parker is the founder and president of the Center for Urban Renewal and Education and author of “Necessary Noise: How Donald Trump Inflames the Culture War and Why This is Good News for America.” She hosts a weekly show called “Cure America with Star Parker.”

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  1. Ms. Parker, there will always be debate within in some circles suggesting that 9/11 was a “punishment from God” for the moral transgressions of the American people. A similar debate within the conservative clergy took place during the AIDS crisis. The days following the Oklahoma City bombing. Even 155 years ago during the height of the Civil War. People may never know why God allows “bad things to happen to good people.” Take heart that we have a loving God and that such suggestions only cheapen His ultimate sovereignty over the world.

  2. The IMMORAL Progressives and Democrats are on a mission to Destroy Christianity and God.
    We can Not let them and their LGBTQ agenda win!

  3. I just removed my flag from the front of my house. If I put it back up, it’s going upside down. The undeniable reality that American soldiers are going to be abandoned in hell, knowing death is inevitable and only praying that it’s by gunshot as opposed to torture…the American government is not facilitating the evacuation and in fact obstructing our allies efforts in rescuing our own people! I’m so ashamed to say we must speak of America like we speak of China, deliberately and methodically distinguishing the people from the government as two opposing sides. I implore any citizen who’s awake and has a heart remember that the gassing of Jews started with a little yellow Star warn on their shirts, and the public stoning of woman started with a “fashionable” hijab. NO western woman it is not a fashion statement! Stop it now! When does it stop? If you know a mask doesn’t work against covid and is only a symbol then what happens when your boss tells you too start the gas, or throw the first stone? Take off your mask! Get a grip America! This is sickening! America is about to make the Romans look civil and decent. Ugh people wake up.