Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Thoughts on 9/11

There are a lot of mixed emotions out there surrounding the meaning of today but even if it's just for today let's think about those innocent lives lost and remind ourselves how lucky we are to still be here. Even if you're having a bad day, some would argue that's better than not having today at all.


Not that it is particularly profound, but that is my Facebook status today and I'm considering making a variation of it my status everyday. It is my belief that recognizing or remembering 9/11 is not about you being a democrat, republican, conservative, liberal, black, white, gay, straight or any other limiting or defining term you or others use to categorize people. It is about being a human being. The entire 9/11 story is controversial. Many people simply don't believe the supposed facts the Bush or Obama administrations have presented to us whereas plenty of people do. 

But that's not what remembering 9/11 is about, at least not to me.

Take away the politics. Take away the facts or rumors. Take away the religions of anyone involved. Now look at it as a human being. I don't care if you think 9/11 was all staged and never happened or if you think it was a terrorist attack or if you think it was a calculated conspiracy by some government. All I care about is the respect of those innocent people who lost their lives that day. There were people just attending a day of work whether it be as an executive or a WTC janitor who never got to take a lunch break. Those people will never get to complain about work or have a bad day again and those are the people who need to and deserve to be remembered. Every other day of the year feel free to spew your hatred or support of the government, your belief in a calculated attack or your quest for world peace but for today, just one day, think about the individuals. 

Like most every Americans I can remember where I was when I heard the news and am still horrified by the circumstances. I don't like to watch footage of it and don't like to see before, during or after pictures. It's a hard pill to swallow and gets worse for me with age. As I get older I think about my mom who used to work there and start the dreaded What If game. I imagine myself or someone I know heading out to work every morning with their usual routines and never getting to come back home. I think about kids who are now 10 years old and missing their mom and/or dad. When 9/11 happened I was 13 years old and none of those things really came into my head. But as I get older and mature every year things transform and take on new meaning. Maybe it's because I've been to the World Trade Center during the week when there were thousands of people everywhere hopping into elevators or stopping for coffee that I can see a clear picture of the ordinary people who were affected.

Please, again even if just for today, take a break from the usual day to day complaints and annoyances and just be alive. Be a human being. Think and live with compassion because there are plenty who would trade an underground bed for every single part of your life you're complaining about today.

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