BY ALLIE PINICK
My earliest memory of 9/11, was when I was in the fifth grade. All three of the fifth-grade teachers brought their students into one room. We watched a child-friendly video over 9/11 to get the students thinking about the event. After the video, the teachers told us what happened that day, because some students weren’t paying attention during the video. They weren’t paying attention because there wasn’t an understanding of the topic. Then one of the teachers said that September 11th was her birthday. This caught many of the students’ attention, their hands coming up one by one asking questions. She talked about how she refused to celebrate her birthday because of the tragedies on that day.
It was the biggest terrorist attack in history on American soil. The events set in motion big changes in the United States. It caused an increase in security, mostly aviation. The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) changed American airlines. It’s something that children today are used to, because they grew up in a world where flying the skies no longer seems so friendly. Once a symbol of advancement and the greatness of human innovation, airports now feel more like a symbol of modern dangers and enhanced security protocols..
After the attack, teachers took on the role of helping their students understand what happened. They wanted their students to have an understanding of what that tragic moment meant to the nation. This continued up until the 10th anniversary, slowly the discussions about that day decreased.
Unfortunately now, the past few years, 9/11 hasn’t been in most of the classes’ discussions. Most teachers will only spend a day on the topic, but there is a possibility that they won’t go over it at all. The lack of discussion for this event in our history is a serious problem. You would think that there would be more talk of 9/11 because the ones in school weren’t even alive during the attack, and they need to know what happened. But there isn’t much talk.
The new generations could easily forget about what happened that day if it isn’t in class discussions. The post- 9/11 world is the only thing that new generations know. They have little to no personal memory of the events, so they need their educators and parents to explain the 9/11 events. It needs to be ingrained in their heads so it isn’t forgotten like other parts of history.
People think terrorism is a new thing, but it’s not. It’s been going on for quite some time, we’ve just forgotten those parts of history. Being forgotten is a possibility for 9/11 if we keep throwing it under the rug because eventually there won’t be anyone to remember what happened that day.
Why is talking about this event decreasing? It’s because teachers are afraid. We shouldn’t blame the educators for being scared to talk about this difficult topic. The controversial issues of politics and religion could cause a very heated and personal conversation. It can help students gain higher thinking and speaking skills that can be used in dealing with real-world problems. Just watching a video and talking about the events can help students get a broader understanding and carry it throughout their lives.
We can’t forget about what happened on 9/11, even if it is a difficult thing to talk about. For the sake of our nation and future generations it needs to be something that is in discussions so we understand it and maybe even help prevent a future 9/11 from ever happening.