EDITORIAL: Remembering 9/11

This year’s freshman class was born around 1999, two years before the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center and Pentagon. And whether you have memories from that horrid day or not, we all can agree that today is a day for remembrance, unity and solidarity.

Just as we have recently seen with Hurricane Harvey, our first responders are on the front lines when disasters strike. On Sept. 11, 2001, we witnessed the best New York City, Washington D.C. and the surrounding regions had to offer as first responders risked their lives to save others. Their courage and selflessness knew no bounds as men and women rushed into burning buildings in an unknown attack. Their sacrifices should be honored and revered how communities pull together in a time of need.

The world watched in the aftermath of the attacks as a nation came together to grieve the loss of innocent lives and heal the wound of a nation senselessly attacked. NATO enacted Article 5—a collective defense agreement that considers an attack against one member as an attack against all members—for the first, and only, time in history after the attacks on Sept. 11, 2001. Unity, both internationally and domestically, in peace time and war time, has served us well. Let us remember how nations can come together in defense of and support of one another so that we all may live happier, more peaceful lives.

“The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” Wise words from Franklin D. Roosevelt’s first inaugural address still ring true today. Terrorism succeeds only if we let it change our daily lives for the worse and give up our freedoms and liberties. It is unlikely that there will be a drastic decline in terrorist incidences in the near future. However, it remains vital that we respond globally with words and actions of solidarity. This means on social media and also through better information sharing among allies. Our solidarity must be multifaceted, both symbolic and tangible, if we are to one day live in a more peaceful world.

Take some time today to reflect on how the world has changed since Sept. 11, 2001. Remember those who sacrificed their lives that day, and in all of the days that have followed, fighting terrorism and senseless violence. 

Editor’s note: previously the article said students were born “three years” before the attacks. It has been corrected to “two years”.