Theresa O’Connor

Five years ago

By now you’ve read (or skipped) a whole bunch of blog posts retelling the tale of where the writer was when the planes hit the World Trade Center five years ago today. I’ll keep mine brief:

I was getting ready to go to work when Casey messaged me about the attack. I didn’t have a TV or a radio, so I reloaded a bajillion times. I eventually ventured out from my apartment to buy a little radio so I could listen to KPBS.

Later that day I linked to an amazing (but now 404-ing) set of images from New York, which (I seem to recall) were posted by fellow Rose alumnus Aaron Eppert.

Out of all the posts calling "never again" or "never forget," I think Peter said it best:

I know that, despite its faults, Western civilization is the greatest, freest, most enlightened, most open, most advanced, most peaceful, most ethical civilization in the history of humanity. I know that the West is the last, best hope of earth. I know that freedom and enlightenment must be defended, articulated, and indeed actively and confidently spread to every far corner of the earth if humanity is to survive and advance, as individuals and as a species.

I know that one small voice cannot have much influence on the course of history, but I know that each of us must do what we can to defend, articulate, and spread freedom and enlightenment.

I highly recommend clicking through to his whole post, which he’s now expanded into an essay: Islam and the Future of Civilization.