A Defining Day

Some people try to forget the tragic day of September 11, 2001 while others will always remember. No matter who you are or what you believe in, you will no doubt have a memory of that day etched in your mind. More than anything, it was a day that defined many things in our world.

In the days and months after the attack, our country pulled together and became united as one. Bickering subsided and people embraced each other as fellow Americans. Patriotism was reborn, and I remember people selling American flags on the street corners of L.A. for $10 showing that capitalism runs deep. George W. Bush stood with firefighters at Ground Zero showing strength and courage, perhaps the pinnacle of his career as president. People wore FDNY hats and t-shirts and donated millions to show support for those who lost their lives. America was reminiscent of times past.

This post appeared in its original form at DC Metblogs
As time went on, this feeling of brotherhood began to crumble. No longer were Democrats and Republicans working across party lines but rather pointing fingers and placing blame. The message from our president went from “holding those responsible” to “finding WMD’s and fighting the axis of evil”, and somewhere in between, “Mission accomplished”. The Republican Party, long rooted in heavy defense spending, had found its new cause: fighting terrorism and winning votes with fear. The Democrats could no longer sit on the liberal side of the fence, so of course they had to show their support for the war in Iraq, even if it meant being accused later of “flip flopping”. Our nation’s politics were redefined.

Most of all, for us little people, the aftermath of 9/11 meant that we had to give up some of our civil liberties and things we’d been taking for granted for years. Now we have long airport security lines, airline watch lists, wire tapping, barricades around most government buildings, and metal detectors at places like the National Botanic Gardens. We have now joined the rest of the world in being a target for terrorist attacks on our homeland. Our day to day lives have been redefined whether we like it or not.

As the years go by it becomes easy to forget the feelings we all had on that sunny morning. I think it’s important to take the time to reflect, remember those who lost their lives, and think about how our world has been redefined as a result of one day in history. What goes through your mind on this day every year?

This post appeared in its original form at DC Metblogs

Hailing from the Mile High City, Max has also lived in Tinsel Town, the Emerald City, as well as the City of Brotherly Love. Now a District resident, he likes to write about cool photos by local photographers, the DC restaurant and bar scene, or anything else that pops into his mind.

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