It's the little things.
As I spent the weekend trying to work through Tuesday's tragedies and the shocking aftermath, I took comfort in the little things that lead me to a big conclusion:
Right overcomes wrong. Good trumps evil. And, the magnitude of the triumph is -- proverbially -- in direct proportion to evil's measure.
Tom Petrie is right, "This is evilness in the extreme." As such, the scope of our victory, of our strength to persevere, will be large.
How do I know? It's the little things.
It's the millions of flags that fly in honor of our nation, in honor of the citizens that lost their lives in Tuesday's terror and, indeed, in honor of the scores who have sacrificed their lives and countless others who risked and are risking their lives in the heroic rescue efforts.
It's the placards, the marquees, the signs and the billboards with signs ranging from the simple yet poignant, "God Bless America" to the more pointed "Good will Prevail" and "We are with you, Mr. President" in front of churches, synagogues and shopping centers.
It's the lines out the door and around the block of citizen-patriots waiting to give blood at local American Red Cross chapters, spanning from ground zero in Manhattan and Washington to the coasts of California and even Alaska and Hawaii.
It's the donations of blankets, of food, of clothing and countless other items from around the globe that have found their way to New York to aid and comfort families of victims and those working tirelessly to return the city to normal.
It's the contributions of millions from corporate America -- those directly impacted by the horror and those spared alike -- to the rescue and rebuilding efforts in both Manhattan and Washington.
It's the signs in the booths of photographers, potters and painters at an arts and craft show in Georgia this weekend that said, "A portion of the proceeds from all sales will be donated to the American Red Cross."
It's the countless millions of other acts of compassion, random and anonymous acts of kindness, that have shown that as Americans we are at once compassionate and united in our sense of patriotism and purpose.
Back to Business -- Slowly
The awkward, nervous, almost surreal feelings that traders and investors will no doubt feel when the opening bell sounds on Monday morning will also give way -- albeit slowly -- to the day's business.
The little things tell me so.
The need of professionals to assure customers and clients that America and its capitalism remain vibrant in the face of evil.
The focus of countless citizen-investors to provide support for a market that has provided so much to them that they know it is time to give back.
The strength and spirit of American businesses that are represented by the paper that trades on Wall Street and elsewhere that -- while affected -- refuses to be broken by the cowardice of terror.
prescient, articulated belief of long-time market pros like Jim Cramer who know the risks of conflict but also know and are willing to side with the long-term vibrancy of the world's most vivacious market.
As we return, our focus may be a bit cloudy, and our faith tested but American citizen-capitalists are a resilient bunch. And the singular purpose at hand -- to stabilize and fortify our markets -- will quickly become clear.
Manhattan, Washington, our nation and, indeed, our world will never be the same in the aftermath of this horror. And, the images will continue to be painful in the weeks and months to come. We are likely to wage a war, the enormity and scope of which, our generation has never seen.
We will be angry, we will be sad, we will be afraid.
We Americans will be unified in our sense of pride and purpose, more so than at any time in over a generation.
And citizen-investors will be focused on preserving American capitalism and our free markets as one symbol of the vitality of our nation. We will persevere and we will prosper.
I know that because the little things aren't really little things after all.
Christopher S. Edmonds is president of Resource Dynamics, a private financial consulting firm based in Atlanta. At time of publication, neither Edmonds nor his firm held positions in any securities mentioned in this column, although holdings can change at any time. Under no circumstances does the information in this column represent a recommendation to buy or sell stocks. While Edmonds cannot provide investment advice or recommendations, he welcomes your feedback and invites you to send it to