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Diane Pucin

Terrorism Can't Defeat Heroism

September 16, 2001|Diane Pucin

NCAA office pools, Super Bowl Sunday, the World Series, these events bring our country together. We gather around TVs to see Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa chase a home-run record. We brag that we picked Hampton to beat Iowa State on our NCAA pool, even if we didn't. Maybe what happened Tuesday will help us refocus on what is good about the games we play and watch, how they have the power to unite Americans of different races and religions.

Maybe we'll find a team owner who won't raise ticket prices next year, in honor of our country. Maybe a free agent will say that whatever raise he negotiates will go into a scholarship fund for a child who has been left fatherless or motherless, who might no longer have a dad to play catch with him in the park or a mother to take her to a tennis lesson.

Today, I hope, I'll be back in California. Monday the games will start again. When they do, I'll remember the guys playing basketball, just so they could get rid of anger, energy, tears. I'll remember the father and son playing catch and all the men and women wearing Yankee caps or Giant jerseys as they dug through rubble or tried to find family members.

It won't be easy to cheer for the Dodgers at first. It's hard to imagine being excited over the USC-UCLA football game or getting goose bumps when the Lakers receive their championship rings. But we will and we should. It's who we are. We're Americans.

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Diane Pucin can be reached at diane.pucin@latimes.com.

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