[personal profile] meapet
Some of this note I posted 5 years ago, but as it is part of the historical record, it still holds true.

September 11, 2001 was a horrific and tragic day, and one of those "moments in time" that you will always remember. We all know who we were before, where we were during, and what we're doing today, 10 years later. I remember the panic, the terror, the pain. I still get nervous when a plane flies too low over the house, or I hear explosions at times/places I don't expect them. The first thought after the earthquake was "are we being bombed?" We, as a country, have become more vigilant, more hateful, and yet still in some ways more compassionate, and more hopeful. But yet we're still looking back on that day with a strange sense- as if we're letting everyone who was lost those days down if we don't. For weeks now we've heard about 9-11, 10 years later. But why just look back on this day that keeps us all filled with a sense of uneasiness, discord, and sadness? Why do we neglect to look at the good points in our history that happened on or around that same day? Why do we not celebrate the victories of that day and other days in our collective history? For example:

Taken from Wikipedia.com and other sources....

"By the middle of 1814, American generals, including Major Generals Jacob Brown and Winfield Scott, had drastically improved the fighting abilities and discipline of the army. Their renewed attack on the Niagara peninsula quickly captured Fort Erie. Winfield Scott then gained a decisive victory over an equal British force at the Battle of Chippewa on July 5. An attempt to advance further ended with a hard-fought drawn battle at Lundy's Lane on July 25. The Americans withdrew but withstood a prolonged Siege of Fort Erie. The British raised the siege but lack of provisions eventually forced the Americans to retreat across the Niagara.

Meanwhile, following the abdication of Napoleon, British troops began arriving in North America. Less than half were veterans of the Peninsula and the remainder came from garrisons. Along with the troops came instructions for a number of offensives against the United States. British strategy was changing and like the Americans, the British were seeking advantages for the peace negotiations in Ghent. Governor-General Sir George Prevost was instructed to launch an offensive into the United States. However, his invasion was repulsed by the naval Battle of Lake Champlain in Plattsburgh Bay on September 11, 1814 which gave the Americans control of Lake Champlain. Theodore Roosevelt later termed it the greatest naval battle of the war."

During the same time, hundreds of miles away in a major coastal city called Baltimore, Francis Scott Key and an associate were bargaining for the release of a captured friend- a Doctor from Upper Marlboro,MD. He successfully negotiated the release, but was held aboard a ship with the British fleet because he had been in earshot of the British plan to attack Fort McHenry and then Baltimore. While on board this ship, he scrawled a poem onto the back of an envelope, which we now, as Americans, join together in singing: "The Star Spangled Banner," our National Anthem.

Other great September 11ths include 1997- when the Mars lander reaches Mars to expand space exploration, and the birthdays of O Henry, Moby, Vic Wooton and Harry Connick Jr, to name a few great people worth celebrating as well. Wedding anniversaries, small personal victories, military successes, and more are all lost in the loud din of all of the news articles and bell ringing.

While we should remember and never forget the events of September 11, 2001, we should also remember other September 11ths, including September 11, 1814. While it may seem insignificant to many, this was another period in our history when we could have lost much, but we gained even more when all was said and done.

So I'll take a moment of silence for those lost, and for what I lost on Sept 11, 2001, but I'll also look at what I, as an American, have gained through all of our history, and continue to look forward in the hope that we as a nation can truly heal and grow as we have before and will again.

To steal a paragraph from a friend of mine 'I imagine most people will find me naive and irreverent. But, that's me. I want more good memories for September 11th. "Never forget," yes. But don't let it leave a bad taste in our collective mouths. I want to move on. I want to brush off the dust and say, "Ok. It's a beautiful day! Let's do some good today. Let's have some fun."'

Date: 2012-09-14 08:28 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greendalek.livejournal.com
I've no idea why I'm only just seeing this now, but: well said. Still quite relevant (and welcome) reading, 11 years later. --applauds--

September 2011


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