I still remember how I felt on 9/11/2001, but it seems a long time ago now. I don’t think we should forget big events like this, but how much should we privilege them? 9/11 was certainly a big event that changed the course of our country and the world.
It is important, however, not to see such big events as sui generis. When we declare that something is unique, we give up the ability to learn from it. We can learn from events only when they can be put into a system or a recognizable pattern.
After a while, the memorials become perfunctory. I mean no disrespect by saying this. As I said up top, I still remember and during the memorial at the flagpole some of the feelings came back. I did indeed think about the ebb and flow of history during the minute of silence and during the next hours and days. I think this is what should happen. This is more useful than simply bring back emotions, as deep or real as they may be.