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Closing Thoughts About 9/11

Unless you have been in a cryogenic sleep, you are no doubt aware that yesterday was the tenth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. The day has been dubbed by then President Bush as Patriot Day. Over the last few days, me and just about everyone else had a lot of things to say about this tragedy. Today, I have some closing thoughts before we open this discussion up again next year.

Shortly after the tragedy, I started writing a series of poems about everything. I think I wrote one a day for four or five days. At the time, I knew that the 9/11 tragedy was like a hole in our collective human consciousness. It was clear to me that the world had changed, but I didn’t know if that change would be for good or ill. It wasn’t until the last in my poem series that I realized that the world had changed for the worse.

Since 9/11, America has been in perpetual war, we have been paranoid about future attacks, we have tortured people, spied on our own citizens, our economy is near collapse, and this nation has become much more fundamental in their religious belief. The only plus side is that people of reason have awoken from our apathetic slumber.

Most damaging of all however is that people no longer look to the future. Now we have become fixated on the past. I remember when space exploration excited people. Now most people see it as a waste of money that could be used toward tax cuts for the rich or in a war fighting someone somewhere for something.

The average religious believer looks to ancient knowledge to get them through the day instead of seeking knowledge through modern science. Education is not a priority any more. Instead of making our education system better, many parents have taken their kids out of the schools. In some cases, I can’t blame them. The schools today don’t take into account a 21st century environment. They don’t take advantage of Google or the internet. Instead, they use flawed text books from Texas.

Now ten years after the 9/11 attacks, America is still fixated on this past event rather than moving forward. Osama bin Laden may be dead, but he got the last laugh. The worst part is that we did it to ourselves. We are no longer dreamers, thinkers, movers, or makers. Instead, we have become like frightened children worried about the monster under our beds.

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