Ten years later, a look back on 9/11

Bailey Zaputil

A decade has passed since the violent terrorist attacks orchestrated by the Islamic extremist group, Al-Queda. Today, now grown up from kindergarden and elementary years, Kennedy students reflect on how 9/11 changed America and their lives.

Jason Blum, soph., lived on Long Island when the attacks happened, talks about his feelings on the 10-year decade.

“I think that it’s good that we have been basically been able to move on and continue with our lives since the incident was so tragic,” Blum said. He was five years old on 9/11, and said that all he remembers was his dad and mom taking him into a room and watching the TV as the buildings fell down. They explained what happened. Blum said he can’t remember his parents’ reactions, but that he thinks they were calm.

Audrey Brock, fr., talks about how 9/11 affected the perspective of Islamic people and how that affected her friendships.

“There was a time at which a friend of mine who liked a guy who was Muslim,” Brock said, “and we had a friend who was very adamant that they shouldn’t be dating, and no one was talking to her because she’s so mean about that stuff, and I think the biggest impact on me was the racial ties.”

Brock was three when the towers fell, She remembers her dad rushed into the living room and turned to FOX News and she saw the first footage of the towers going down.

On what the date means to her, Brock said, “To me, it [the date] means the end of the American ideal: rich, fearless, and untouchable. This is when we realized that we couldn’t always be better than everyone at everything. We can be hurt.”

On how 9/11 affected America, Blum said,“It made a pretty big anti-terrorist movement, and it made us back up our security to prevent that from happening again and it pretty much started a war.”

Blum and Brock differed on their views on the recent death of the Osama Bin Laden, the man who was in charge of the violent attacks. U.S. forces in Abbottabad, Pakistan killed Osama Bin Laden on May 1, 2011. After a 10 year battle the man responsible for beginning and funding the terrorist group Al-Qaeda had been put to justice.

“I think that it has solved a problem that’s been going on a long time, and it’s a good thing now that our troops can come home,” Blum said.

Brock said, however, “I don’t really feel that much changed, I mean, there’s still terrorism and I don’t think that his followers will be deterred by his death, and I feel that 9/11 was a tragedy that can’t be made up by Bin Laden’s death.”

Almost 3,000 people died on 9/11, when Al-Qaeda boarded four United States planes, two of which were crashed into the World Trade Center Twin Towers; one was crashed into the Pentagon in Virginia, and the fourth, United Airlines Flight 93 was crashed into a field in Pennsylvania after the passengers heroically overtook the plane from terrorists as they tried to fly it into the White House.

By Katie Hefflefinger and Bailey Zaputil

Graphic by Rachel Gilman