It was a Sunday night and well past my bedtime when my dad knocked on my bedroom door. I woke up to his urgent voice telling me to get out of bed and come into his room. Slightly groggy, I had no idea why he was waking me up at such an hour. It was May 1st, 2011, at about 11:30 PM when I walked into my parent’s room to unexpected news: Osama Bin Laden was dead.
I was merely 9 years old but I still remember that day vividly. I remember watching as coverage of the New York Mets game changed to announce the news. I remember sitting at the end of the bed watching in awe as President Obama delivered his famous speech, saying “justice has been done”. I remember feeling a sense of pride while watching the videos of thousands of Americans take to the streets of New York and D.C. while waving flags, climbing lamp posts, and chanting “U-S-A!”
I was only in 3rd grade but I remember going to school the next morning and seeing that almost everyone, myself included, was sporting some kind of patriotic clothing. One friend of mine was wearing red, white, and blue socks and a headband. Although many of us weren’t born on 9/11 (and those of us who were born then were barely infants), we still understood the significance of Bin Laden’s death. We had had family members who had perished that day or, like myself, had family members who had served during the War on Terror.
It was these displays of patriotism that stood out to me the most that day. For one day it seemed that all Americans came together and forgot who they voted for. They forgot their differences and came together as one nation. Ten years later, I haven’t seen anything like that since, and that needs to change.
I see that we divide ourselves into partisan groups far too often as a country. Democrats and Republicans. Liberals and Conservatives. I see us break down into racial groups as well. Immigrants and natural-born citizens. Black and White. At the end of the day, we are all a part of the great American experiment. Despite our differences, we are all Americans.
Every American should be thankful for the fact that they are American. My ancestors, like millions of others from around the globe, came from Italy a century ago to come get a better life for themselves and for their kin. It is easy to forget the words printed on every coin and dollar: “E Pluribus Unum.” Out of Many, One. On this day, I ask you to remember that despite our differences we are all one people, striving to make this great country a better place.
God bless America.
The views expressed in this article are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Lone Conservative staff.