Remembering. That's what today's all about. Seeing what happened. Really thinking about how we can change things. Supporting our country. Red, white, and blue isn't the only way you can do that, though. Protest for something you believe in, then. But that might offend someone. Oh, no. Can't do that. Can't take a stand to make our country better.
One of the things I found most striking today that I just recently learned this school year, is that when the plane hit the top of the first tower, some people jumped. Some were killed instantly. But some knew they were going to die, but didn't want to feel pain, so they jumped. The question for the people on those top floors was not whether or not to die. It was how to die. They took a leap that cost them their lives, rather than being suffocated by the fumes, or incinerated by the flames. The towers crumbled within two hours of being struck. One hundred-ten stories of people going about their daily lives, working to make our country a better place, but because of a coordinated suicide attack, 2,819 innocent people lost their lives.
At least two hundred of those people jumped. And the sight of them jumping saved others' lives. After the first jet struck the north tower, people started jumping. Many from the south tower realized what happened, and ran for their lives. Seeing someone jump, or even a picture of someone in midair, has to be what has haunted me most about 9/11.
"The jumping started shortly after the first jet hit at 8:46 a.m. People jumped continuously during the 102 minutes that the north tower stood. Two people jumped as the north tower began to fall at 10:28 a.m., witnesses said. For those who jumped, the fall lasted 10 seconds. They struck the ground at just less than 150 miles per hour — not fast enough to cause unconsciousness while falling, but fast enough to ensure instant death on impact. People jumped from all four sides of the north tower. They jumped alone, in pairs and in groups." -USA Today Those who did jump were forced out by smoke. The plane hit the north tower on the 94th through the 98th floors. Flame and heat shot up and down elevator shafts, causing much smoke, which would have made it very hard to breathe. Some people were even blown out windows because of the explosion.
If you were there, what would you have done? Would you have allowed yourself to die from toxic fumes around you, or would you have jumped to a definite fate? No, I'm not asking you to commit suicide. I would actually prefer you didn't. I'm asking you to think about taking a leap of faith, knowing what consequences might follow. If God told you that you needed to make a difference right now, that He needed you to stand out for him this very moment...
Would you jump?
(Written on 9/11/09)