commentary

9-11 We Have Forgotten

When I was younger, every year I would catch clips from the news mentioning

JFK’s assassination in Dallas. One particular time I asked my mother ‘where were you when you heard about JFK?’ She told me where she was like it happened yesterday. Fast forward to 2001. I would have  a similar experience. I was living in Birmingham , AL. I had a job at a car dealership in their Parts Department. I was in the shipping and receiving department. One of the parts drivers pulled up at the loading dock and was playing his truck radio when the DJ made the announcement that a plane had hit one of the towers of the World Trade Center. So I decided to see what was happening on the TV in the customer service lounge. What I saw next was an image I will never forget.

That moment changed life in America forever. It seemed like time just stood still. Never had I seen anything like this. A plane just hit a building with people just working. A plane that had people in it just trying to get from point A to point B. All for the purpose of what?  It became crystal clear when I saw this on my TV Box.

In the end, 2,996 people were killed that day. I remember in the following days, people were just a little friendlier. We weren’t Black Americans, White Americans, Asian Americans, Latino Americans. We were Americans.We had one common goal to focus on.

The American made Boogey Man, Osama Bin Laden. As the months and years have gone by, just like everything else we do in America, it hasn’t become a day to reflect on those who lost their lives. It has become a day of posting pictures like this

on Facebook pages. People putting in posts ‘Never Forget.’ Sadly we have forgotten. 9/11 has quickly become a day that some THING happened. Not a day of reflection on the many lives that have and are still affected to this day. These images

of this day have quickly become just some PEOPLE who were there the day it happened. You would think that this would greatly affect people in a positive way. Wrong! We have gone back to our regular lives with a lot of hate speak towards each other and have even gone so far as to use this day as a measuring stick of who is or would be a great leader in this time of crisis. All in an attempt to win an election. How cynical have we become of each other in America when this day has been regulated to a day of Facebook posting, Tweeting, and the occasional Instagram picture of this.

Sorry America, we have forgotten. The only way we would seem to really remember if the government made 9/11 a holiday when we would REALLY not take this day serious ala MLK Day.  It would then get regulated to having an excuse of going to the mall for a 9/11 sale. We as Americans should be ashamed of ourselves. This day and the death of Osama Bin Laden shouldn’t be used as a cheap ploy to gain a vote or to make a buck. This day should be a reflection of the lives that were affected. Someone lost a mother, a father, a brother, a sister, a child, a co-worker, a total stranger even. Everyone lost a little something that day. The hijackers did have a positive effect though. For a little while, just a little while, they brought us closer to each other. For a brief moment, they united us like no other. That’s something that we should never, ever forget.

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2 thoughts on “9-11 We Have Forgotten

  1. I couldn’t agree with you more. I had the exact samd conversation with my mom about JFK, MLK and Malcolm X. The sadness I felt looking at the pictures made me want to cry again. I began that post with many things in mind, like the shroud of sadness that descended over my beloved city that day and for many days after. It is a metaphor that bears remembering. Like you, I felt the effects of us being one big family in the aftermath of the attacks but it has dissipated to soundbytes and political posturing which is nothing but sad. Humans are SLOW to learn, case in point. There are some of us out there who get it but the vast majority, not so much.

    I’m not even sure I dig the phrase “Never Forget” because in a way it seems to be a call for vengeance. Never forget what? The only thing which truly bears remembering is the people we lost.

  2. Sorry I’m getting to this post so late, but you are spot on with everything you wrote. Americans have a really short memory and that is one of the reasons we’re so screwed up. The one good thing that could have resulted from 9-11 was national unity, and we were too stupid to recognize the value of that. So now it has been squandered on fights between this party and that party, this candidate and that candidate. I really think we have become the most spoiled nation on earth, if we can move on past a day and a tragedy like 9-11 and allow the significance of that whole incident to fade away. As long as we have Starbucks and the TV and sports on Sunday, then we’re good. I bet if we’d lost THOSE things instead of 2.900+ American lives we’d still be pissed off about it, and motivated to work together to be a stronger country. That’s a real WTF situation, no doubt about it.

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