I’ll always remember pulling up my then-favorite Internet hangout
and seeing the top post, “THE GLASS DESERT,” full of comments about how we should nuke ‘em 'til they glow.
I’ll always remember the guy who drove his pickup truck into the Islamic Center of East Lansing the day after.
I’ll always remember all the big mouths on TV and all the big words in fancy papers agreeing that the only sensible recourse was to kill whoever did this, kill whoever was associated with anyone who did this, kill whoever lived in the same country as anyone who did this and maybe even just go ahead and kill anyone who looks like anyone who did this, just to be safe.
I’ll always remember the outrage directed toward anyone who dared suggest it might not actually be super awesome to respond to terrorist attacks on symbols of American financial, military, and political might by spending trillions of dollars on killing millions of people to make a political point.
I’ll always remember being assured by The Adults in the Room that it would be un-American to oppose not just any wars the President might want to do in the name of revenge, but also any policy goals he felt like enacting. As a result, we gutted our public schools
and gave rich people $5.6 trillion of our money
, huge social losses we’ve never recouped.
I’ll always remember the security theatre
: The Land of the Free and Home of the Brave not just willing but eager
to strip itself of any right to decency or privacy. Eager
to sacrifice liberty and democracy in the pursuit of security. Eager
to give up everything that makes our country great just to be able to go back to not thinking about it
I’ll always remember the outpouring of goodwill from around the world, our longtime allies (and longtime enemies) grieving along with us. I’ll always remember how that goodwill curdled as we burned the world in vengeance. I’ll always remember how we repaid the French vowing “Les Français N’oublieront Jaimais
” by chowing down on “Freedom Fries
I’ll always remember how our leaders and bosses used the tragedy as cover to spend the next 20 years dismantling the peace and prosperity Millenials were raised to believe was our birthright–and slipped it all into their pockets.
I love America. I love our people. I believe in our values and ideals. I honor the service of those who’ve put their lives on the line to uphold those ideals. I mourn for all those who lost their lives, their loved ones, or their way of life on September 11th, 2001. I’ll never forget.
But I’ll always remember.