I pulled yesterday’s page off my calendar this morning and read today’s page. Tuesday, the 11th. September 11th. It took me a moment to register what that meant. September 11th. It seemed to ring some bell of familiarity, a remembrance of something significant. And then it hit me. September 11th. The blow was strengthened, not weakened, by the ease of my own forgetfulness. And I couldn’t help but think how quickly we have forgotten what we swore to “Always Remember”.
Scarcely a year after the event, “Always Remember”, once a reminder to never forget the lives lost and the sacrifices made at the battlefield of Ground Zero, became a battlecry. A means to justify a war in a land across the sea. And now, it has ceased to mean even that.
We take our shoes off at security checkpoints, let our bags be searched at theme parks, and talk about safety versus sacrifice, all the while forgetting how these procedures came into existence. In some ways, and perhaps I’m wrong to do so, I envy those countries who daily experience the acts of terrorism and war America has been freed of for so long. Those countries truly know what freedom taste like, because they are never allowed to forget the terror that can enslave this world if we let it. But for America to remember, for America to recognize the true meaning of freedom, it took an event of the magnitude of September 11th. And yet, despite such reminders of what blessings we have, it seems we will Always Forget.