I hesitate to write what I really think and feel about today.
I don’t like that it’s called Patriot Day. I don’t like what the word patriot has come to mean.
Living in Europe the last three years changed my perspective on what it means to be an American. Often embarrassed to be associated with American politics, I dread being considered a loud and arrogant fool that many consider Americans to be. The last couple years, events in the USA have further upset me and my family and we don’t want to fly Old Glory over our garage or wear Old Navy Tshirts with flags.
We’re not proud.
Everyone on social media, TV, the radio is talking about where they were the morning the towers were hit with airplanes.
I was in my classroom, preparing to teach English to 10th graders.
I remember my thoughts flew immediately to my parents, working in the FORSCOM federal government building in Atlanta, then to my daughter, not quite one year old, in daycare.
What would I tell my toddler when she grew older and could understand? What do I tell my four kids?
It was surreal.
I am poignant.
I am so grateful and proud of our first responders. I am so heartbroken with those injured and lost and the families who mourn.
But I’m also angry.
I’m angry at terrorists and our own politicians and officials.
Our nation reacted.
Many flocked to places of worship, embraced family and friends, cried out in sorrow for those lives lost, for families in agony over lost ones.
Too many closed their hearts, expressing hatred for an entire race, nation, religion, blaming anyone and everyone associated with it for a tragedy, an act of terrorism.
Our nation returned evil for evil. We’re still at war.
The events of September 11, 2001, are woven into the American tapestry. It is our history. It affects our future.
Every individual who lived to remember that day has a choice to make. A choice to love and move forward and forge bonds or a choice to hate, fear, and sever ties.
I choose love.
I love this prayer for the 9/11 anniversary. A wonderful perspective on 9/11 and the aftermath.
Book list – something for every age:
Nine, Ten: A September 11 Story by Nora Raleigh Baskin
Fireboat: The Heroic Adventures of the John J. Harvey by Maira Kalman
Eleven by Tom Rogers
Bullyville by Francine Prose
Time Riders by Alex Scarrow
The Memory of Things: A Novel by Gae Polisner
Towers Falling by Jewell Parker Rhodes
All We Have Left by Wendy Mills
What Were the Twin Towers? by Jim O’Connor
Saved by the Boats: The Heroic Sea Evacuation of September 11 by Julie Gassman
America Is Under Attack: September 11, 2001: The Day the Towers Fell by Don Brown
The 9/11 Report: A Graphic Adaptation by Sid Jacobson
We’ll Always Remember the 11th of Septemberby Jamie Franklin Rowe
I Survived the Attacks of September 11th, 2001 by Lauren Tarshis
My Dad Survived 9/11! by Baby Professor
The Survivor Tree: Inspired by a True Story by Cheryl Somers Aubin
September 11, 2001: Then and Now by Peter Benoit
The Man in the Red Bandanna by Honor Crowther Fagan
Sirius, the hero dog of 9/11 by Hank Fellows
Just a Drop of Water by Kerry O’Malley Cerra
The Little Chapel that Stood by A. B. Curtiss
September Roses by Jeanette Winter
14 Cows for America by Carmen Agra Deedy
Shooting Kabul by N. H. Senzai
Falling Man: A Novel by Don DeLillo
Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer
with their eyes: September 11th: The View from a High School at Ground Zero by Annie Thoms
Small Wonder: Essays by Barbara Kingsolver
With Every Mistake by Gwynne Dyer
Against All Enemies: Inside America’s War on Terror by Richard A. Clarke
The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda and the Road to 9/11 by Lawrence Wright
Jesus for President: Politics for Ordinary Radicals by Shane Claiborne
9-11: Artists Respond by Will Eisner
911: The Book of Help (Authors Respond to the Tragedy) by Michael Cart
On That Day: A Book of Hope for Children by Andrea Patel
We All Fall Down AND United We Stand by Eric Walters
September 12th: We Knew Everything Would Be All Right by Masterson Elementary School Students
The Man Who Walked Between the Towers by Mordicai Gerstein
Each Kindness by Jacqueline Woodson
Be Kind by Pat Zietlow Miller
One Green Apple by Eve Bunting
- 9-11 video
- How to talk to your kids about September 11: An age-by-age guide
- Scholastic lessons
- 9/11 resources from The Homeschool Mom
- 9/11 Memorial Website and lessons
- Homeschool library of links
- PBS lessons
- Teach Mideast
- Apples 4 the Teacher
- Living Montessori Now
- Ben and Me Middle School Resources
- His Mercy is New