Reflecting On 9/11 After 19 Years

We normally try to keep it light here and give you something to laugh at, but we would be remiss if we didn’t briefly touch upon the awful day in American history that we are now somehow 19 years removed from: 9/11. There are only a handful of days in the history of this country that you can refer to in just two words and everyone immediately knows what you’re talking about. Pearl Harbor, D-Day, Nine Eleven etc.

Right now is a contentious time in this country as politicians continue to have a battle royale rather than work together, there are huge waves of protests aimed at racial injustice, and there is a virus that has killed nearly 200,000 Americans in less than a year. But if there is one thing that 9/11 revealed to us, it’s the power of unifying regardless of race, religion, orientation, creed, or color to become stronger together.

As anyone my age does, I vividly remember September 11th. I remember being in my 7th grade first period gym class when the planes crashed into the twin towers. My gym teacher Mr. O stopped class and wheeled out one of those old tube TVs on the cart and we all just stood there in the locker room and watched the news in silence. In our second period health class our teacher also wheeled out the TV and we just continued to watch the news in silence. Remember this is before everyone had smartphones and instant notifications so nobody knew what the hell was going on. The teachers had no idea what to do with a bunch of 12 year olds staring into the face of the worst terrorist attack in our country’s history. We were too old to just lie to so what were they supposed to do? So we all just watched together and had that moment burned into our collective brains.

So even though we are in incredibly troubling times with seemingly no end in sight, it’s important to remember what we learned in the wake of 9/11. Whether you’re a cop, a firefighter, an EMT, a construction worker, a student, a 9-5er, a liberal, a Republican, black, white, whatever you are just remember, we’re all Americans. Forget the politics and forget the differences that sometimes seem to drive a wedge between so many of us. We’re all Americans. We will never forget that horrible day and the nearly 3,000 lives lost, but we can use that as a reminder of how great this country can be when we are all staring into the dark void of despair, together.

I will leave you with a story you may be familiar with, but if you haven’t seen this video I implore you to take the 13 minutes out of your day and watch the story of Welles Crowther aka The Man in the Red Bandana.

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