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How Long Should We Remember 9/11?
People often debate whether time actually heals old wounds.
We like to think that a tragedy that befalls our loved ones will be for ever ingrained in our minds and will always have a higher value in priorities than other events that happen in our lives down the road.
Whether we like it or not, that is not the case. I think at the very least, time does dull our senses to the hurt done to us.
I have to admit eleven years after planes took down the twin towers in New York I feel more weary then outrage. We as individuals and as a nation are tired of the prolong war on terror.
Days and months after 9/11 the tragedy consumed me. I thought about all the people that died going to work on a beautiful Indian Summer day. Tuesday to be specific. One night I even had a nightmare.
People that only wanted to go to work and had plans later in the day died for no reason that day. Wives and husbands of children and spouses they would never see again. Young people just out of college starting their careers and maybe thinking about having a drink or a date after work.
Maybe the service people at the small shops in the twin towers or the restaurants with only a high school education just trying to struggle though another day. I guess it didn't matter their backgrounds or dreams. Death that day didn't care.
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I use to be in the Marine Corps and at the time I felt beyond sad and at the same time helpless. I had a sort of rage and wanted someone to pay.
I later I bought a DVD of 9/11. The DVD was of a French film crew in NYC doing a documentary of a fire department in the city. As they are interviewing a fire fighter you can see in the background a plane hitting the first tower.
Later in the film you see the mayor Rudy Giuliani stepping into one of the lobbies of the twin towers. You hear crashing and glass breaking outside. It's people jumping from the upper levels of the twin towers because of the heat.
I told everyone that would listen that this DVD or others like it should be played every week on TV to remind people not to forget the tragedy of 9/11.
Time marches on. The tenth anniversary of 9/11 had a parade of shows on TV concerning the events of 9/11. I taped many of them. A year later I have still have those shows unwatched on my DVR. I haven’t watched them for a variety of reasons.
I have many shows such as silly sitcoms and other shows I have recorded and watched then deleted. Seems I can't watch those 9/11 programs nor can I delete them.
Tonight I watched a documentary I forced myself to watch called “9/11 The Day That Changed The World.”
The documentary in a way rejuvenated me. As I said before, we are so tired of the war on terror. It has gone on for so long that we forget why we are doing the things we do right now.
People after over a decade of 9/11 forget how it was in those days soon afterwards. We were all expecting another attack.
President Bush years later was criticized for some of the decisions he made in the aftermath. I'm not here to to criticize or defend those decisions. I do want to stress though that 9/11 was unlike anything that ever happened to our country. This was an attack on the United States that killed more people than Pearl Harbor and unlike Pearl Harbor most of the targets were civilians.
Let there be no mistake, this was a declaration of war on our country. They attacked New York then our military, the Pentagon.
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Days after the attack our airspace was shut down, our military was at full alert.
People forget what happened after Pearl Harbor. We rounded up Japanese-American citizens and sent them to camps. Bush after learning this was the work of radical Muslims went to a Mosque and defended Muslims in a speech.
No, I don't agree with everything Bush did but what happened on 9/11 was a game changer. On that day and those days afterwords I don't know if anyone could have done better. It's so easy to be an armchair quarterback.
I don't know if radical Islamic Muslims even care about the image they portray to their religion. As outsiders we see that the way they practice their religion is that one of death and destruction.
One needs no farther to look then what has happened recently in Mali. Destruction of holy sites, amputation of limbs and the abuse of women. How about the bullet to the head by these same people to a young school girl in Pakistan because she was bold enough to want to go to school?
On 9/11 these same people showed that the way they value life is not consistent with the way we value life, not only to their civilian targets but also to the people that initiate these attacks. They do these acts in the name of their religion.
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My daughter was around 13 when these attacks happened. People her age can't appreciate a life before 9/11. We have been living this new normal since these attacks for people my age. This is the only normal such as my daughter knows.
Maybe I will play those 9/11 programs I recorded a year ago on the tenth anniversary before I delete them. Maybe we all need to remember how almost 3,000 people were killed on a warm September morning and why we live the way we do now.