Nineteen years ago this morning, nearly 3,000 people were killed on American soil when Islamic terrorists hijacked four planes to crash into the World Trade Center in New York City and the Pentagon. Over 6,000 other individuals were injured, many of whom are still dealing with life-long injuries today, along with countless survivors who now live with PTSD. Many have died from chronic conditions resulting from the attack.
Whether someone was near the World Trade Center at the time of the attacks or living on the other side of the globe, all were affected tremendously on this day nearly two decades ago.
Immediately after this tragedy, Americans united to help one another and vowed to “Never Forget.” Whether risking their own lives to save those trapped, giving blood to the Red Cross, joining the military to help protect their homeland from future attacks, or donating to families in need, everyday civilians and first responders across the nation joined together to aid their fellow Americans. They were able to find unity and put aside political differences for the benefit of the nation in the hope of returning peace to their land. We must never forget the tragic attack on American soil, but it is just as vital that we also never forget the unity and strength Americans showed.
What was once an event that displayed contemporary America’s vulnerability can now be reflected upon with hopeful gaze. Sitting now, in 2020, after shutdowns, riots, and seemingly unending societal tension, it may seem like the well of hope has long run dry. 9/11 showed us within each American is a moral drive to protect the nation in which they live.
Ordinary Americans awoke on September 11, 2001 ready to face another benign day— only to answer the vital call to help their neighbor.
The firemen who made multiple trips, knowing each may be their last, did so in order to save American lives. The professional men and women working in the towers helped their coworkers escape so that more could live. The passengers of Flight 93 banded together to overwhelm the hijackers, saving countless American lives in the process. People who were otherwise insignificant gave everything in the name of helping their fellow American.
Most of these people were not born with a special courage that laid dormant until the direst of circumstances, it was built over a lifetime of cohabiting in a nation dependent on unity. This courage was quick, effective, and it was uniquely American.
You may look around yourself in the present day and wonder if unity can once again be achieved in the United States. While we remember 9/11, take heart in knowing that that moral drive for a unified, protected society still resides within us all.
Abraham Lincoln famously said, “A house divided against itself cannot stand.” The message of hope that can be gleaned from 9/11 is that, when our house was falling down around us, everyday Americans stood unified, arm-in-arm for the protection and betterment of each other.
The views expressed in this article are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Lone Conservative staff.