This is a good time to reflect on the beautiful monument that was built on the shores of New Jersey in commemoration of the events of 9/11. One large teardrop, appearing to form slowly, occupying a hideous crack where none should be in a human edifice.
How did this remarkable structure come to be? Russian artist Zurab Tseretelli came upon the idea as he walked the streets of Moscow and observed the grief on people's faces. This deep resonance of the Russian people with American agony was the inspiration for what followed.
Such a response came easily to the Russian people because of their own history of suffering. No people suffered more than the Russians at the hands of their own governments and of the Nazis during the twentieth century.
Let your gaze linger once again upon this gift, and see it as symbolizing our deeper human connection across superficial divides that can ever only have transient significance. Let us resolve to build upon that connection rather than be swept up in the accelerating drumbeat toward confrontation.
(Article changed on April 14, 2018 at 20:03)