“On September 11, 2001, acts of terrorism took the lives of thousands at the World Trade Center in New York City, in a grassy field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, and here at the Pentagon.”
I felt out of place walking around the Pentagon from the Metro station to the Memorial this afternoon, but once I was there, that’s all that mattered. Everyone was respectful, both of the place and the ideas and lives it represents, but also of each other. The dignity that the armed forces brought to the place was communicated to all present.
As time passes, for those of us who weren’t there, who had no personal connection with the attacks, time heals what we felt. And further, looking at the memorial, it’s striking to realize that a victim of the attack that day who was about 3 years old, would now be about 14. I know some fear that we “obsess” over the attacks, but we cannot forget what it was to have the peace of that day broken so cruelly.
We cannot live on a perpetual war footing, but we cannot forget what it takes to keep us living in peace.