Feature Friday: Reflections on September 11th

I felt like the 10th anniversary of September 11th deserved attention, but I just didn’t know what to say. While reading and watching coverage about the anniversary, it struck me just how in shock we have been-how despite the strength of 9/11 as a rhetorical tool, we have not yet processed what happened to us as a nation.

I found this commentary on a blog I follow called WomenOnTheFence. Lia M. Keith summed up a lot of what I was thinking with her recap of her 9/11/01 experience as an air traffic controller. I hope you find her reflection as interesting and thought-provoking as I did.


You may wonder ‘why this?’ on my blog about “the self-styled life.” In short, it seems obvious that the ambiguity of my generation is at least in part directly related to what happened on September 11, 2001. I was a freshman in college that September. This incident changed us and the trajectory of our adulthood in a way we still don’t understand. In order to move forward, I think it’s important to at least try to come to terms with that reality.

What are your thoughts on the anniversary of 9/11?

By the way, please excuse the lack of formatting… I’m posting from my phone right now!

2 responses to “Feature Friday: Reflections on September 11th

  1. Jean:

    Thanks as always for your reflections. I think your point about your (is it still my generation too?) generation not completely understanding the event’s impact is valid. As I said in my own blog, our response as a nation has actually divided us in many ways by contributing (or creating) the very things we are fighting about today.

    That would confuse anyone, much less a generation of citizens. The killing of the man actually responsible for 9/11 is almost an afterthought behind our high unemployment rate.

    Thanks as always cuz. My thoughts, as always, are with you

  2. I remember where I was, who told me, what time in relation to the time it happened, what happened that day, and what happened that week. However, I remember finally having contact with my daughter, too. It wasn’t about just my reaction. I remember she was in college. She called. Her call made me pause so that I could be wholly there with her, privately as she tried to process it all. She called quite scared saying “.I just have to realize that all this repeated footage is not it happening over and over again.” Her comment startled me. Yet, her perspective demonstrated to me the real fear our younger generation had and the power of the media playing those horrific scenes repeatedly. I told her to please pull herself away from the TV and stop watching. It wasn’t easy. When Mayor Giuliani gave us permission to laugh on SNL, I thought, “How odd.” But he was right. Even I had fallen to the expectation that the coverage would just keep on coming.
    How terrifying for our air traffic controllers.

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