Sept. 11, 2001 will live in the history books as a day the world changed tremendously.
Many innocent lives were taken, many ideals were destroyed and a certain sense of security that once seemed so real was ripped from Americans and global citizens.
However, who truly stops and thinks about the last day of the world as we knew it? Who reflects on Sept. 10, 2001?
Practically everyone who is old enough to remember 9/11 recalls the events of that day and how he or she felt after realizing that America was under attack. Personally, I remember being confused as to why so many of my second grade classmates’ parents were taking their children home from school.
I also was shocked that my fellow human beings could be capable of such actions. Yet, the things I did and felt on Sept. 10 are all but impossible to remember.
It seems odd to try to remember Sept. 10, when such a mammoth event marked the following day. But, forgetting Sept. 10 shocks me as much as the idea of forgetting 9/11.
Forgetting Sept. 10 is forgetting the world as it was. If we cannot remember the world as it was, we disregard the transformation the world undertook on and after 9/11. If we forget 9/10, the victims’ last normal day on Earth, we turn them into mere statistics. Forgetting 9/10 is detrimental to our identity and as Americans. Those who forget where they have been do not know where they are heading.
This principle applies to many other important historical events. Dec. 6, 1941 was also the day before an infamous event in American history, the attack on Pearl Harbor.
Those same people are the only witnesses to life how was was before the world changed.
Though the attack had a large significance, the destruction that took place on that day was made all the more significant because people were able to contrast it the Pearl Harbor of 12/6/41. Like Sept. 10, Dec. 6 contrasts its succeeding day and makes it all the more vital in the story of our history as a nation. It signifies the magnitude of what transpired. Those who were not yet born or too young to remember the events of Sept. 10 obviously cannot know of that world.
However, those of us who can have the same responsibility that people of every past generation have had; to remember the before and after of important events for the sake of generations to come.
When elders tell their youths long, intricate stories, it might seem too boring and arduous to pay attention.
After maturing just a bit, young people realize that their elders were not aiming to bore them. By relaying the events of the past, they were simply doing their jobs: guiding us through the future.