Sunday, September 11, 2011


On this, the 10th anniversary of the tragic events of September 11, 2001, we are all being admonished to “never forget” that fateful day on which, as they say, the world changed forever.

Of course, with all the media coverage, you’d have to have some kind of advanced case of Alzheimer’s to be unable to recall what happened, although, I do have to admit, I’m not always entirely sure what we’re supposed to be remembering.

Is it the lives of the people who died? While this is indeed the most poignant aspect of the day, I daresay that those of us who weren’t personally friends or relations with any of the deceased can’t really remember someone we never knew, so all we’re doing is keeping in mind the idea of those folks, and frankly, not so much their lives as their tragic deaths, which frankly, strikes me as an odd thing to focus on.

Is it the terrorist attack itself? I can see the point of wanting to hold on to that as a reminder of actions we despise and despair of, but it also strikes me as perhaps empowering the wrong thing; shouldn’t we be more concerned about preventing something like that from ever happening again?

Is it what we were doing and where we were when the events transpired? This is what we’re hearing from most quarters, but really, who cares? It’s all the same story for everyone who wasn’t there: we glued ourselves to the TV and stared in mute horror the entire day.

What I certainly don’t want to fix in my head is that image of George W. Bush reading The Pet Goat in the direct aftermath of the attack. If I could erase that from my memory, I would.

One thing I would like to hold onto is the sense of connection, community, and compassion that followed (at least for a while), after the attacks. That, I hope, I’ll never forget.


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