So, it's Sunday: the day of supposed rest. Just got home to an empty house. The dog is getting a bath and mani/peti (you guys may not get this), so I thought I would just type some of my thoughts while I have the house to myself. And then I will watch football all day.
So far, it's been a good weekend. I'll be honest, I didn't watch much news. I know, I'm such a hypocrite. Here I tell you that you should be informed citizens, and I am not following my own advice. But I knew that yesterday was an emotional time for me in my life and honestly, I didn't want to revisit those emotions.
First of all, yesterday was Patriot Day. A day of remembrance for the fallen on September 11, 2001. It is hard to believe that it has been nine years. I still remember that Tuesday very vividly. I was in college attending Baker University, the Harvard of the Midwest as it is also known. I was sitting in a classroom at Lawrence High School observing the class for the course Teaching Social Studies in the Secondary Classroom. I remember driving my green, 98 Saturn that morning listening to my CD player, which was connected through the tape deck. I didn't listen to much news or really have a greater sense of the world around me at that time. I was just living day to day trying to get by.
As I walked into the classroom of Mr. Mike, I can't remember his last name, nothing was out of the ordinary. I was looking sharp in my khaki pants and red, short sleeve polo shirt. They were most likely wrinkled, but I was in college and lucky they were clean. A short time after, a friend of mine (Jerry Hunsaker) taking the same course as I walked into the room. He had this look on his face like as something was up. Before he could even sit down, he asked me if I had heard about the twin towers? I did not know. He immediately informed me that a plane had crashed into the twin towers in New York City. Mr. Mike was on his computer, and again this is in 2001, so high speed Internet was not around. It took several minutes for online stories to come up. Then, an announcement. It was the principal of the school, and he gave a brief description of what was going on. "It is unconfirmed, but it appears the United States is under terrorist attack." The time was approximately 7:30 pacific time, 10:30 eastern time. By then, all three planes had reached their target and a fourth went down in a field in Pennsylvania. What was going on?
This is all what was talked about throughout the day. By the time I had left around noon, I was numb. I had so many questions. Most obvious, why? Why was this happening? Classes at Baker were cancelled on Wednesday, and I remember talking to history professor and social science department chair Dr. Karen Exon that same day. I could tell she was quite shocked as well. Really didn't have many answers to my questions, and if she did, I don't remember them. I do remember crying. Almost sobbing. This was a big wake-up call to our nation. We had been attacked for the first time in almost seventy years. But this was different. Or so I thought.
I used this time as an opportunity to question, research, critically think, synthesize, analyze, and find the answers to my questions. I became a believer in being an informed citizen. It was our obligation to know what is going on in the world around us. We seem to be consumed and sometimes overwhelmed with our own daily lives that we sometimes lose touch of reality. True, most of the news in this country is not good. Occasionally, you get a story that brings up something good that was done to benefit the lives of others. However, this is few and far between. But, if we have passion, motivation, dedication, a will to take action, and truly invoke change in our country, then this is the purpose of being informed. Change is a necessary component of our world, but the results of that change depends on today's citizen.
In close, it is important to know what's going on in the world. If the topic in class doesn't turn you on, then you need to find some aspect of the topic that does. You owe it to yourself and to this country to be informed. Yesterday was a day of national service to honor those who lost their lives on September 11, 2001. Ask yourself one question: What will I do today to benefit the lives of others? Thanks for reading. If you read this and post a comment, I will give you extra credit.