It was 18 years ago tomorrow that the world changed.
Nearly 3,000 people in New York City, the Pentagon and a field in Pennsylvania were murdered by 19 vermin. In the years since, the death toll has increased to include people who survived that terrible day but succumbed to medical issues caused by exposure to the dust and chemicals in the debris of Ground Zero and the Pentagon. Thousands more have been added in combat-related deaths from the wars sparked by the attacks.
All of us have been directly impacted by that day, even if none of our friends or family were among those we lost. Can you greet a family member at the end of the jetway in an airport terminal? Can you have a private conversation on the phone without having a computer inside a government building recording it? The Patriot Act might go down as one of the worst government overreactions of all time when historians take a look back at the first decade of the 21st Century.
Much was lost and when we think of this day, it should be with respect and solemnly. It should never be the subject of a funny meme or a joke.
Have you ever heard of a Pearl Harbor joke? You haven’t. December 7, 1941 was that generation’s 9/11. They didn’t laugh about it. They didn’t make jokes or cartoons about it.
Yet, recently I’ve seen people trying to make jokes and memes about 9/11. Some in an attempt to be funny. Others looking to espouse conspiracy theories to shift the blame to other people besides the 19 vermin who did it and the one man who ordered it.
A former friend posted one such meme, was called on it and instead of apologizing and taking it down, chose to double down on it. You caught the use of the word “former” in that sentence, right?
So tomorrow, as we mark the 18th year since that terrible day, let’s do so respectfully. Those no longer among us deserve nothing less than that.