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Remembrance and reflection

Street Smarts

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It’s been 12 years since Sept. 11, 2001, but for most of us the emotions are still strong. And globally, we’re still plagued by terrorism in different forms.

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Daniel Ramirez of the west side is an attorney

What does 9/11 mean to you? It's a recognition that the U.S. can't shut out the world's needs, concerns and threats. Terrorism goes on around the world, but 9/11 was when America lost its innocence and sense of security.

In the 12 years since the attack, how do you think this country's changed? It seems more polarized and more afraid, especially of the Muslim world. After two wars, we're still looking for answers.

How has the world changed? The G8 has put more money into military and intelligence. But is there really a militaristic solution?

What are your thoughts on the U.S. moving toward military action in Syria? I don't think enough diplomacy has been used. We need to use peaceful means first.

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Gary Ammarell of Manitou Springs is retired

Do you remember where you were on 9/11/2001? Yes, I was in Maui, Hawaii. There's a six-hour time difference, and I was getting ready to go on a hike and turned on the TV while I waited for my wife. The buildings had already fallen, and it seemed like science fiction.

How do you think this country's changed in the past 12 years? We got paranoid, and our national security has gone overboard. I used to like to fly, but I don't want to anymore.

What are your thoughts on the U.S. moving toward military action against Syria? I totally disagree with doing that. What's the difference between chemical weapons and other forms of murder? Even if we got rid of Assad, the Taliban and al Qaeda are taking over the rebel movement in Syria.

If you could say one thing to President Obama about Syria, what would it be? Please leave them alone.

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Cris Stoddard of Old Colorado City is an IT consultant

What does 9/11 mean to you? It's a day of mourning that signifies America waking up to the rest of the world. If we play in the rest of the world, the rest of the world could come here to play, and it might look ugly.

In the 12 years since the attack, how do you think this country's changed? With the [National Security Agency] and Internet scandals, we've sacrificed our liberty for a security state.

What are your thoughts on the U.S. moving to military action against Syria? It's hypocrisy. The Syrian government has oppressed and killed people for years, and it's only a problem if they die because of a chemical?

If you could say one thing to President Obama about Syria, what would it be? We've learned that overthrowing a dictator doesn't work; we should help the Syrian refugees.

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