9/11: My Unique and Changing Perspectives

  • Share
  • CevherShare
  • Share

(Above: United States Air Force tribute to the Twin Towers) I was in my 3rd grade math class. Now, I was never particularly fond of math, so when my teacher turned on the TV I was excited. Cartoons, I thought, that has to be better than math. That excitement quickly changed to disappointment, when I thought he was turning on a war movie. I never liked those kinds of movies as a kid – they were too violent.

Now I look back at that day as a defining moment in my life. I didn’t want to become a part of the military at that point (that wouldn’t come for another 6 years) but I finally realized what it meant to be an American. And in the months that followed, I saw a kind of national unity that I had never seen before. In their efforts to insult, demoralize, and embarrass us, they actually made us stronger. America is about resiliency; we ARE passion and we are courage in the face of those who would tear us down.

As an Airman and Air Force officer-in-training I see that day as a defining moment for my country and for the world. It was the turning point from wars of nations to wars of independent parties; it was the turn from an invincible nation to a nation preoccupied, sometimes almost paranoid, with the concept of national defense. It is so easy to lose touch with the significance of that day. It is so easy to detach, even for us Americans, to say “Oh, well, it was New York, not Arizona. I don’t know those people.” We must always remember. We must not be ignorant of our own history, as we must not be ignorant of the history of the world and of those who attacked us. (Below: For the Unknown Soldiers who gave their life.)

2 Comments on “9/11: My Unique and Changing Perspectives”

  1. Kalyn,I can understand your feelings and emotions.My heart really goes for them who died by the hands of men.The words would be scant to condemn that insane and horrendous act.
    I also think that this carnage has changed the scenario of International Politics and when I recollect that day and look at the world now and especially my country then I get shivered with the consequences in the aftermath of 9/11 which are also devastating in nature.
    May peace prevail in the world.

  2. Thanks for sharing your story. I completely relate to your description of experiencing 9/11 while very young – perceptive enough to understand that something very big and important and sad has just happened, but not yet mature enough to understand more.

    Seeing everyone around the nation share their 9/11 stories has been fascinating, especially given how easy it is to share personal stories via social media. Two especially worthwhile examples are Andy Carvin’s Storify compilation [http://storify.com/acarvin/on-september-11-2001] and Andy Jarvis’ vibrant and emotional personal narrative via Twitter [http://twitter.com/#!/jeffjarvis].

Comments are closed.