Editor’s Note: This letter to the editor answered the question I asked as to why 9/11 turned some liberals into conservatives. It seems like kind of a stretch to say that 9/11 has something to do with abortion, but I’m sure everyone has their own reaction to an event that monumental, so this is certainly valid. I’m glad at least one person thought about the subject enough to come up with a response. I may not agree with all of your conclusions on this subject, but I appreciate the feedback, and it sounds like your heart is in the right place.

911 Shaped the New Conservative

To the editor:

In his article, “The 9/11 conservative and the 9/11 liberal” (Sept. 11), Mark Drought says he cannot understand, “how Islamic terrorists convinced them (Democrats who became Conservatives) to alter their positions on everything from taxes to abortion.” I can’t speak for all “9/11 Conservatives,” but I can shed some light on the thinking of former Democrats in my family. These new Conservatives include my mother, who had been a Democrat for over 50 years; a relative who had worked in Ted Kennedy’s office; and my sister whose first job out of Wellesley was with the DNC. The change of heart wasn't sudden and straightforward, but 9/11 played a role.

In the matter of a morning, thousands of people were murdered on 9/11 in a horribly gruesome manner. Those innocent people were given no time to say goodbye to their children, spouses, parents and friends; no time to make peace with their Maker; no time to live out their dreams for the future. It still hurts to think about it.

Our treasured assumption that there would always be a tomorrow to get things right was shattered that day along with the towers and the Pentagon. What if we had been in there? Would we have been ready to die? Are we ready to die now? Do our lives really reflect our true priorities and values?

One of the values that 9/11 reinforced is that life is precious. Every one of those individuals killed left a hole in the world. Every one of them had special talents and unique strengths. Every one of them had a never-to-be-seen-again personality. Every one of them is missed.

How could we not see the parallel to abortion? How could we say some people are valuable and unique and others are not? How could we mourn some deaths and not others? How could we agitate for the protection of some lives, but not others? Aren’t we all equal in the eyes of God? 9/11 tragically reminded us that life is precious and fragile; it was time to live our convictions.

Maura Mudd
Greenwich, Connecticut

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