Sunday, September 11, 2011

9/11 A Different Perspective

When I first started blogging, my boyfriend told me, "I can't wait until you get your first hater comment. Then you'll really know you've made it." He was joking, of course, but it's true. Posting what the vast majority of people already think is essentially playing it safe. No fresh perspective, no thought-provoking dialogue to trigger a novel viewpoint in a new (or familiar) reader.

Well having said that, it should also be perfectly clear that I have no intention of offending anyone through my writing, and if this post seems offensive, in any way, I apologize ahead of time.

On September 11, 2001, a group of 19 militant extremists took the fate of innocent people into their hands, resulting in what is generally now referred to as "The Terrorist Attacks". For those who were there, on site witnessing the pandamonium first hand, I can't even begin to imagine the feelings of chaos and helplessness. The rest of us, however, stayed glued to our televions sets, radios and phones. We assumed the uniform pose of confusion and disbelief; our hands covering our mouths and our bodies huddled together with family, friends, or complete strangers. We watched, stunned and united in the terror of the events unfolding before us. Soon the twin towers fell, and along with them our seemingly impermeable sense of security.
I'm sure everyone has their own recollection of where they were and what they were doing when the planes hit. Personally, I was 16, just waking up to go to school. My radio alarm went off, and in my sleepy haze I wondered into the living room and informed my mom of the radio claims that a plane had just crashed into the Pentagon. She inhaled sharply, and we turned on the television. We stared at the destruction; speechless.

At school I joined my classmates as we went from class to class, our eyes fixed on every television. Ironically, the only teacher that turned it off was my U.S. History teacher, so we could "get some work done".

This event has no doubt caused unimaginable grief and despair to a vast number of people. In some way, whether large or smalle, we were all affected. Some were killed or injured and some had family or friends who were killed or injured. Many still endure the PTSD that often follows a traumatic event, not to mention the lives that were lost or forever changed by the ensuing war.

This is all irrefutable, and by no means do I intend to make the degree of these peoples' suffering seem any less severe than it was (and still is). My point is this: we, the United States, are the fortunate ones.

Attacks like these occur daily, if not hourly, in some countries. Yet in the United States, they are reason for a national holiday. We have one day a year, where we remember the violence and fear of that one other particular day 10 years ago. In some countries, (like the very countries we are currently at war with), they don't have time to stop and remember. To recollect where they were and what they were doing "that one time" when terrorists attacked their home. In some countries, "that one time" doesn't exist. Violence, destruction and terror is their past, present, and future.

How fortunate am I, that I don't live in a country like Somalia, the generally thought to be most corrupt country in the world? Or Chad, where you are most likely to die as a child? I don't live in a state of constant pain, corruption and fear. I don't have to worry about a renegade lighting my house on fire, being murdered for showing too much of my wrists, or the possibility of my future child being kidnapped. I don't have to worry about my future son being turned into a soldier of war at 9 years old or my niece being used as a sex slave.

What happened was an incredibly cruel moment in my country's history, but when I think of it, I try to think of all that I am fortunate for now. I know death, violence and destruction still occur in places in America, but they do not consistently occur on the scale we witnessed that day.

The 9/11 attacks have taught me to be grateful for the country I currently live in. Grateful that similar attacks do not happen here on a daily basis, grateful that we have the technology to be able to broadcast and inform others throughout the nation. Above all, I'm grateful that we have the means to rebuild, and grateful that I am here, in my nice warm bed, healthy, safe, and blogging.

How did 9/11 affect you?


  1. I do like your fresh perspective, and you're right. As a country, we've been blessed by not having to battle the evils of chaos and wars, as some other nations deal with daily. But this was an eye-opening event, where evil met our innocent ones on our doorstep.

  2. I'm on the other side of the world and I still have an exact memory of 9/11 . . . waking up in the morning as a 10 year old to find my dad glued to the television still in his underwear (he'd been unable to sleep so had switched on the tv at 3 in the morning to what he thought was a movie) and mum with tear stains on her cheeks. I find it funny how at the time I just thought of it as something that happened in America, that didn't have any effect on me. It's only now that I'm studying the social sciences and anthropology in particular that ones realises the effect 9/11 had on the whole world and the effect it still has in terms of media representations, prejudices and world conflict. I think overal though you have an extremely good point. Thanks for the great thought provoking post!

  3. I am also on the opposite part of your world Marlee and I admire you for your brave thoughts. This such a good point that other people should realize.

    P.S. I just awarded you for being the Versatile Blogger. I don't know if you have received somethin like this before but I believe you deserve this. Check it out here


  4. You are very right. Since 9/11 has got nothing to do with my life (being from Germany), I decided not to comment on this particular "anniversary", but this is just one tragic incident in a sea of atrocities commited by humans targeting other humans, and only the fact that it happened in a country fortunate enough to have cameras and media infrastructure ready to broadcast everything turned it into something that most people in the western world will remember for a long time. I regret the loss of all the lives, but I also regret every other life lost to hatred and ignorance, and by letting the people who committed this particular crime frighten us into submitting to even more checks and controls and restrictions, we are giving them even more power than they had that day 10 years ago.

  5. 10 years ago today I was going out to the quilting stores with my mom when the news hit. It was eerie driving through Denver with no planes in the sky, and everywhere we went, tv's and radios were on to the news....
    But now I feel that we should remember how lucky we are to live here, and we should remember that this should make us stronger, not tear us apart!

  6. What a great post. I remember the day so vividly I was up and getting ready to head to work. I remember telling my hubby that it looked like a commercial plane had crashed into one of the towers he came running and together we watched as the aircraft hit the other tower. We were shocked. I went to work that morning before all the facts were in, later in the am we found out about the attacks and we were sent home. I live on the west coast and I had to drive over a very famous bridge in order to get home it was the scariest ride of my life. Every 2 seconds I was checking the sky to make sure planes were not near the bridge. There is so much hatred in the world it scares me sometimes. Again great post. Let's remember all those innocent lives that were lost on this day.

  7. Hi - Am following you now

    Thank you for your thoughtful tribute

    Best Wishes in your studies - you will be wonderful!

    beachside cottage

  8. Your post gave me goosebumps... I'm in Canada & am grateful that for the most part, we live in great & safe countries. Thinking of those near & far who are suffering today.

  9. Nice tribute. I am so very grateful to live in such a great country.

    I am following you on Facebook now. Please follow back at

  10. Oh that was such a crappy perspective blah blah blah...there you go got a bad comment..haha

    Really though it was a different take and not just the same old same old, enjoyed your perspective and I'm also just as grateful to live in such a country.

  11. You have a wonderful perspective on this. Our family was not directly affected by the 9/11 attacks, but we sat riveted again this weekend reliving the horror as it played out on our television screen. But it was just that, on our television screen, and it happened 10 years ago.

    We do have so much to be thankful for in this the United States of America. Among the top are our fantastic military and emergency responders that work so hard every day to fight for our freedoms and keep us safe from so much of the horror that goes on in other places.

    I am new to the NOBH crew, and wanted to stop in to say hello, and thank you for linking up with NOBH. Your different perspective is most welcome.

  12. A great blog! I remember not being able to sleep for days after 9/11 and I was not directly affected myself! Read my post on 9/11 Reflections! and/or like us on facebook @

  13. Great post! Taking it from different angle and putting a different perceptive on 9/11 from a worldwide prospective!!! Thanks for stopping by and I am now your newest follower! Looking forward to reading more!

  14. It's so sad and frustrating to see what's happening in the world
    we live in.

    P.S. Thanks so much for the comment. Yes, Canon 5D Mark II is awesome. it takes good pictures. It's worth waiting for a great camera.

  15. Reality. Perspective. Thanks for sharing. I'm your new follower, too :).

  16. Interesting perspective and I enjoyed your thoughts and insights. You are so right that our country is blessed to not have to face terror 24/7 like so many other countries in the world. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on 9-11 at NOBH! :)

  17. Perfect! I couldn't have said it any better. In fact, my husband and I often discuss these things amongst ourselves but know the rest of our family and friends will not share our same thoughts. I'm glad to know we are not the only ones. Love it!

  18. Hey,

    just read this, it's a great post. you are so right, It was terrible, I was 12 and remember the radio just stopping dead as the presenters heard the news and shakily apologised after a few minutes of silence that there seemed to be a major incident happening in America. Respect for those who died, of course and for their families but we should celebrate on how well America and those families have rebuilt themselves and bounced back.

    I have respect also for those who live through it every day. And I hope that one day it will turn around in the same way.

    Fi x



Related Posts:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...