Charles Blow Shares His Lessons from 9/11

Nearly every decade following the horrific events of Sept. 11, Charles Blow reflects on how the tragedy has shaped our nations. In the 20 years since the attacks, he has penned two incredibly moving pieces for The New York Times.   

In the first opinion piece “A Lesson From 9/11” published on Sept. 10, 2010, he spoke about how the world changed: 

“Nine years ago today, we saw the world stand still. We saw the innocence of a nation crumble to the ground. We saw the face of evil form in plumes of smoke and ash. It was Sept. 11, 2001.” 

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Closing in on the 20th anniversary of the attacks, Blow sat down with his colleague, DC Today host Del Walters, to speak about his writing and memories of the tragic day.  

At the time of the attacks, the BNC Prime host was working in the graphics department of the NYT. He describes the “unbelievable nature” of the events that took place after emerging from the subway to see one of the Twin Towers was hit by a plane. 

“I am walking briskly through Times Square to get to The New York Times building and I hear an audible gasp,” Blow recalled. “I turn to look at the jumbotron and another plane has hit another one of the buildings.” 

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He went on to discuss how he finds the words to write about the historic event in spite of keeping aspects of the history distant from himself because of how personal the tragedies were. From the close proximity of knowing people who lost loved ones to having to smell burning metal in New York City for months, the memories stay with him.  

Blow writes about how our world has ever changed and the sensory-inducing memories in his latest piece about 9/11 for The New York Times, “Our Children Will Never Know the Innocence We Knew.” 

Watch his appearance on DC Today with Del Walters below for the full story. 

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