I was in history class the day the world stood still. I witnessed, on television, the destructive moments that would mark the start of an incessant war against Western civilization, an attack on the freedoms we had all come to know.
My teacher had postponed the day’s lesson in favor of this crisis of international proportions. As I witnessed the emblazoned images on the TV screen, which was hanging in the upper-left corner of our classroom, I recalled thinking to myself “this must be a dream.”
It was not.
At least seven people from my hometown of Livingston, New Jersey, perished in that terrorist attack. It was the first time in my life that I had felt sorrow, anger and determination simultaneously.
Fear was not an option.
I knew I was living through history. I also realized that I had received a brazen introduction to an enemy that would become more familiar than I’d ever hoped for.
Something awakened in me that day. While I was born in America and identify as an American of Persian ethnicity, I felt a renewed sense of pride and obligation to this nation and our allies throughout the world who uphold the values that make this country so great.
Over the coming years, I would equally yearn to find a way to help those living under the oppressive nature of hatred and fear to rise up and embrace the concept that they, too, could experience the same liberties and freedoms that every human being should be granted.
The Manhattan skyline I had grown up with would never be the same. Those two great pillars were physically gone. But the force that had been created in their absence continues to remind me of why we fight for our freedoms. It is often said that in someone’s absence, we learn to appreciate them.
September 11 is a constant reminder for us to appreciate and hold on to those 12 great pillars granted to us by our founding fathers in the U.S. Constitution: National sovereignty, natural law, self-evident truth, equality, inalienable rights, the inalienable right to life, the inalienable right to liberty, the inalienable right to private property, the primary purpose of government being subscribed as the protection of these inalienable rights, popular sovereignty, federalism and states’ rights and Divine Providence.
Never forget: No nation on earth was born great. It was made great. America is no exception. And it is precisely that humble thinking that makes us exceptional.
-Adelle M. Nazarian
(This post was originally published in Breitbart News: http://www.breitbart.com/…/2…/09/11/breitbart-remembers-911/)