For a few years after Sept. 11, my heart would pound every time I heard a low flying airplane. Even though I lived far from the actual tragedy itself, my second-grade self began to comprehend loss and fear. In college, I have come to learn the impact of that day in the lives of my peers and professors, but even though my own realization of the day came late, I can watch as America tries to forget.
It wasn’t until I came here last fall and discussed the tragedy in my political science class that I realized the horror of that day. I realized the effect it had on my peers, best friends, and neighbors’ lives.
The huge divide that separated me from New York City that day was slowly being bridged together. I realized 11 years later the power of Sept. 11. As I walked past the hundreds of tiny American flags in front of the Elaine Langone Center, the silence from my peers was humbling, and I spent a moment looking at the flags and reflecting on America.
This year, Sept. 11 came and went. The Conservatives Club paid the same homage as it had in the past, but not a word was spoken in a class or a table conversation. Twitter and Facebook were filled with short anecdotes and statements expressing love for our country, but collectively, Americans have truly started to move on. In 2001 our country came together and stood as one, but now our country exists in division and conflict. For a while Sept. 11 was a day where people came together to discuss loss and fear, and it was a day to show pride and appreciation.
We have lost touch of that as a country. Media has turned its attention to new things and people have directed their hurt to anger.
They say time heals wounds: to forgive, but not forget. It seems, though, that our nation has tried
its best to heal its wounds by forgetting. Americans often look for direction from the media on what they should be focusing on. The media’s lack of attention toward the remembrance of Sept. 11 has in turn caused people to focus on other things. People will never forget the day their lives changed, where they were and whom they lost, but they try their best to forget the pain and suffering that day caused. It is natural for human beings to move on, but we must remember. For years to come, the most I can ask for is to spend a few minutes remembering and reconciling with the hardships of our past.