I was reading Amanda Palmer’s blog today about 9/11 or rather I was reading the comment section when it struck me, this is the most I have read or heard about 9/11 remembrance in….well since it happened.
You see without realizing it around this time each year I cut myself off the media, news, magazine shows, newspapers..you name it. This is very unlike me I read at least three news websites a day and get my school newspaper at least daily. But I haven’t not since 9/11 has been once again in the forefront of it all.
I’d never really thought about why I did this I just did, its common lots of people avoid it too sad too fresh to terrifying to remember. But reading the comment section of Palmer’s I realized what the real reason I avoided it all was, and to explain it I have to take you back to the day for me.
It was my senior year of highschool, everything was excitement and anticipation there was a tangible energy in the air. An unpenetrable happiness passed among the senior class one we thought impermeable. What can I say we were young naive and idealistic.
I was in English when the whispers of a bomb in New york and the pentagon started going around, some of the students had cell phones or were on the computers in classes, we all thought it was a lone crazy like Timothy Mcvay, larger attacks planned by terrorists just didn’t happen here not America.
Then the teacher wheeled in a t.v cart and we watched the towers fall, we watched the people jump in a desperate attempt to survive at any cost.
To say that I lived in the middle of it all is an understatement, draw a line from NYC to DC to the crash site in Penn in the middle of that triangle you’ll find my highschool, my town the towns where my friends and classmates lived. A lot of my classmates had parents who worked in NYC and some had parents who worked in the pentagon. We had a lot of military families in our school.
Imagine being 16.17,18 and seeing absolute terror in your friends eyes as they frantically try to reach their parents, try to see if they are still alive. By this time the phone systems were so clogged nothing was getting through, and there were rumours a fourth plane was still unaccounted for. They felt it safer to have us finish out the school day rather than having frantic panicked high schoolers drive home quit yet.
This was a tragedy nothing had ever prepared us for, things like this happened yes but not here, not in the U.S.A. In the days that followed as the terror and shock subsided you were left with a feeling of…not quite hope but a wish that we as Americans could come together and be better and stronger for this act. That we could learn and grow from it.
Instead we had politicians turn it into a talking point to win elections, the you are with us or against us mentality pervaded the air turning friends into rivals, with people like Anne Coulter called democrats in congress traitors for not clapping for the president.
You saw face value patriotism everywhere, the towns and houses were littered with American flag, and I do mean littered. You see very few of them kept their flags from touching the ground, or took them in at night nor did they properly light the ones left out after dark. They left regular flags out in horrible weather and let them get tattered torn and disgraceful.
You see real patriots don’t do that when they display a flag, they show it the honour and respect it deserves. The sad thing is the same people who so disdainfully treated the flag are the same to yell traitor if you burn a flag in protest, to disagree with their views.
And that is why I avoid 9/11 memorial media, because it has nothing to do with actually honouring and remembering those we lost so tragically that day.
politicians have stolen it and basterdized it using it as a tool to control the masses and further their own agendas. After all that’s how Bush stayed in power so long, his basic message was if you don’t vote republican the terrorists win and we will be attacked again.
I do think we should remember 9/11 I think we should hold it in our hearts and honour it how we see fit, because those of us who lived through that day will always have a scar on our psyche our national innocence is gone.
Our pain our memories our loves ones our cities should not become a soapbox for political agenda or grandstanding. I don’t care if you support the war or don’t support the war. I don’t care if you hate american policy or love it. Because 9/11 isn’t about any of that, not a single bit 9/11 is about pain and heartbreak and memories, and perhaps if we can get over the hatred and pretentiousness of it all 9/11 is about healing.