Monday, September 11, 2006

Where were you 30 years ago today?

Today is the 5 year anniversary of 9/11. Lots of TV shows, movies and memorial services are happening right now which depict the events of that day. Many of us this morning are remembering where we were on this morning 5 years ago.

I had just slept through a seminary class and woke up late. I walked down stairs in my apartment and turned on the TV. And that is pretty much where I stayed for the rest of the day. I had only just moved to Texas from Baltimore a few weeks ago. And now I watched the Northeast get attacked by our own planes.

My wife and I talked about getting the movies "World Trade Center" and "United 93" on DVD and saving them. We want our kids to know what happened that day in real time. This thought gave birth to the question of what we will be thinking 25 years from now.

The President has recognized this day as a day of service and good will. Will people being doing acts of kindness 25 years from now? How will we view this day on September 11, 2031? Will this be remembered as the beginning of a war that stretches on for decades? Will this not be remembered as the most devastating terrorist attack on American soil, but rather the first?

I am guessing our kids will ask us questions about it. It will probably be like how our parents asked our grandparents about Pearl Harbor. The difference may be that our kids will be asking about the attack that begins a war that they grow up around.

Maybe the raw footage from CNN combined with the movies will help them feel what it was like 5 years ago. But I am not sure that anything can replicate that feeling of shock and horror. Then again, the real tragedy may be that they will have a few 9/11's of their own. Maybe 25 years from now, our kids will know all too well what that kind of terrorism feels like.


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