9/11 Reminiscing

Say what you will about the sweet miracle of unquestioning faith, I consider a capacity for it terrifying and absolutely vile. — Kurt Vonnegut

It’s been 15 years since the attacks of 9/11. I was 21 at the time, just coming into adulthood. Even though I live several hundred miles from New York City, it had a profound effect on me. In the confusion before we knew what was happening–not just the towers but also an attack aimed at the Pentagon, and who knew if there would be more–I realized that if the US Government was overthrown then the Constitution would be nothing more than a historic old piece of paper. So much for our precious Constitutional rights. We can’t ever take that for granted.

Later, after initially taking part in the uptick in nationalistic religious fervor, I realized that being willing to die for one’s beliefs is not a good thing. Faith is dangerous, and unquestioning belief can motivate people to do terrible things. Just a couple years later, I identified as an atheist.

One thought on “9/11 Reminiscing

  1. I live in northern Virginia, and at the time I was a mom of small children. The schools had to figure out what to do that day, since everybody wanted their kids home NOW, but there were kids whose parents worked at the Pentagon, or who were trapped downtown. Our mass transit system pretty much shut down (we have subway and bus routes that stop at the Pentagon, so those obviously weren’t working). So there were a lot of people who work in DC trying to figure out how to get home that first day.

    My nephew, who was in the Army stationed at Ft. Myer/Arlington Cemetery at the time, spent the next 48 hrs. attempting to dig people out of the damaged area of the Pentagon. I only knew one person who was killed (and then only as an acquaintance), but later got to know three of the survivors from the Pentagon, all with severe burn injuries.

    I was already an atheist then. If I had still had any religion left, I think 9/11 would have killed it.

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