September 11th 2014

Can you believe that it's been 13 years since the terrorist attacks in New York City on the World Trade Center? It's been over a decade since Tuesday, September 11, 2001. Causing over $10 billion alone in damage, the lives lost (3,000+ people) on that horrible day are priceless.

I remember when I first heard of the terrorist attacks. I was in class typing up a paper about ethnicity and the college environment. If I remember correctly, it was a general Psychology class. One of the assistant professors came running in and mentioned that a plane was hijacked (United Airlines Flight 93) and landed in Pennsylvania.
My entire being went completely numb. It was as if a plethora of fear manifested my entire being. The only thing I could think was "what would motivate someone to want to do this?" Ironic that I was writing a paper that incorporated racial profiling and this type of affliction was occurring, as I hit space followed by enter.

I proceed to look at my prepaid cell phone where I noticed that I had received a few missed calls from family and friends. When I checked the voicemails, the entire terrorist attack was brought to my attention. Little did I know that about 20 terrorists from a terrorist group had an agenda and were looking to desperately be heard through their actions, so they took it upon themselves to hijack planes, crash them into buildings and take lives, including their own.

The only thing I could think of was the manipulation and the marginalization of these "terrorists". I think these people were simply made to believe they are nothing, unless they do something to garner attention and make some sort of change, as a result. I remember reading about this type of thing, but I never thought that a group would take it one step further and actually kill people in the process.

As an Iranian American woman living in Pittsburgh (which is where I happened to live/be at the time of the attacks, as well) it was evident that these people were all part of a social exclusion. Crime is often embraced and valued in the social marginalization of people. So, these terrorists were actually taught that killing other people just to be heard was actually the right thing to do. And as a result, change would happen.

Almost like a regressive imperialism, I believe the motivation for these attacks was quite evident, but at the end of the day, no matter what anyone attempted to do, the brave ended up losing the battle. When I look back 13 years ago when this happened, I see a part of history. There were a lot of heartaches and a lot of heartbreaks, but in the end, I see a country still standing. A country that is still alive and well.

Freewill is a choice, as freedom is too. We live in a country that allows us to use our freedom for whatever reason we choose. It is certain that we will never forget what happened on this day many years ago, but we can be grateful and thankful that we are still here and still standing.