The day when the question you hear is "Where were you?"
The day when the word "remember" echoes through our nation.
As anyone who was old enough to know what was going on that day, I remember where I was when I found out. I worked technical support at an internet company and was on the phone with a customer who had flipped her TV on for her child to keep the little one occupied while I helped her out with her internet. I remember the silence, then the choice words she said - followed by "Get to a television, I'll call back later." Many others in our call center were experiencing the same type of calls, and it wasn't very long before the many television sets in the call center were tuned in. Though, when I think about that day and the weeks following this terrible tragedy, it isn't these moments I remember most. For me, it was the fear. Not fear for our country or fear of another attack - it was the fear for my friends and those that would later become my family.
My husband and I had been dating for a few years in 2001. He is a first generation American. His grandfather (whom he lived with at the time) brought their family to the US in the 60's. Their country of origin: Egypt. Their religion: Muslim. Most people remember how this country came together in those weeks following 9/11. I remember how this country showed their hate to their own citizens. I remember how we happily gave up individual freedoms and rights so that we could feel "safer". I remember how ignorance of a religion and a few zealots [from that religion] brought out the worst in Americans and fueled the fires of discord in an attempt to put a face to the sadness and anger they were feeling.
Eleven years later...the hate and ignorance have waned some. Those Muslims that live in America have done a fantastic job of educating people, but it's still not enough. People are scared of what they don't know, what they don't understand. This simple fact still remains though: the way people are treated because of how they look, what their religion is, or what their name happens to be is not okay and should never be accepted by a civilized people.
So, I take a break from my normal Fragile X posts today to remember....
To remember those that lost their lives.
To remember those that risked (and gave) their own lives to help others.
To remember those that lost their lives in military service as a result of these attacks.
To remember those citizens that have been persecuted for the horrific acts of a few.
but also...to remember that hate is never the answer.