Several days after 9/11, my then-husband and I ordered dinner from our favorite Middle Eastern restaurant. When the delivery guy pulled into our driveway, I saw that it was the same guy as always, the one who loved our little mutt, Comet, so much that he could barely tear himself away from her after his business had been concluded. So I opened the front door to let her run to him, as usual, and he knelt down to pet her and rub her ears, as usual. A moment later, he looked up, and I saw tears running down his face. I was confused, and he turned back and gestured to a sign that my husband had hand-lettered and stuck in the ground in our front yard.
The sign said "Justice, not war."
"Thank you for that," he said. "Thank you." He wiped his tears with the back of his hand and walked toward me, handing me our order. "It has been so hard. We get calls all day long. Threatening calls. And my cousin...someone threw a rock through his window."
"That's terrible," I said. "That's shocking," I said, though I did not really think it was shocking.
"We are Lebanese," he continued. "We are Christians. We are not Muslims."
"It shouldn't matter," I countered, softy. He looked at me, and I shrugged.
"You are good people," he said finally.
"So are you."
After I paid him and he drove away, it occurred to me, I mean I think it really hit me hard for the first time that a tremendous price was about to be paid for what had just happened, and it was going to be paid by all the wrong people.