Thursday, September 11, 2014

Post-post 9-11

It's been 13 years since the towers fell. I'm sure most of you have been made aware of this. If not, well, I think we are under orders to never forget.

I was 16 at the time, essentially the middle of my life  up to this point. I remember where I was. But I also remember other  things from that year. I remember a Britney Spears interview from Summer where she spoke of how great a year it had been. We'd all gotten over our fear the Y2k bug/The Great King of Terror would end civilization. I felt well on my way to one of those optimist futures where food comes in pills and cars fly.

I also remember a discarded magazine from the library. It was Time, from before 2000. It wrote of the things we feared might happen in The millennial new year.  Sure enough, Bin Laden's face was in there.

I wish those of you born after 2001  could see what I'm talking about. I don't want to let nostalgia grab hold, because I was fairly young, but in all my pre 9-11 life the major wars America was involved where nothing compared to Iraq and Afghanistan. The idea of carrying water or a Hockey stick into a plane was not something we had to watch out for. We had terrorism! But we kind of kept living.

We didn't just continue living in the Post 9-11 world. Not by a long shot. We decided whatever kept us safe, or felt like it would, was justifiable. The  2,977 that died on 9-11 are now joined by 6,717 that died in the War on Terror(I don't know if it's a succesful revenge to lose twice the people you are avenging), a conflict against the general idea of terrorism.  Said terrorism in this case took the shape of two sovereign countries who ended up  costing us 1.5 trillion dollars(so far) and being a detour from defeating the specific group that specifically Attacked America.

We sewed mistrust, and reaped it. After a few years of  war on terror, disillusion was born. Many, tired of the lies of the Government, turned abroad for their lies. Many fell in with conspiracy theorists. Yet many stuck fanatically fast to the government.  Much division ensued.

We did not rebuild the towers. We built a Museum to remind ourselves we once had towers. It's a poor choice if you ask me.

So am I saying everything used to be better? Absolutely not. This era is beautiful. Our phones used to only be useful for calling. And naked Batgirl drawings where a hassle to get.

But we're also still living in a Post 9-11 mentality. We're still looking over our shoulders. We're still thinking maybe we can stop 9-11 II if we let NSA spy on Americans, and hurt anyone we even suspect is a terrorist.

But this year, President Obama finally called used the T word instead of euphemising . It gives me hope, that maybe we're ready to move into a Post-post 9-11 mentality. A world where  we can live without feeling our choices are. getting  blown up by Dessert People or getting touched in the junk at the airport. A world where we don't have to roll our eyes when we talk about Freedom. A world where we're not at war anymore.

I don't know about you, but I'm ready for a Post-Post 9-11 world. Any old country can suffer a terrorist attack. It takes a truly great country to come out stronger.


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