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Industries shouldn't take 9/11 lightly

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On Sept. 11, 2001, I was getting ready for school in Oakes, N.D. As I walked out my family's front door, I caught a glimpse of bursting flames flashing across the kitchen TV screen. I didn't realize terrorists were attacking our country until I arrived at school.

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Tuesday marks the 11th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks.

Before that terrible day, I had never really understood the true meaning of terrorism. And since I first watched the twin towers of the World Trade Center fall on 9/11, I - like many others - have not been able to shake the very idea of ever-present threats against our nation.

People often say time heals all things, but I can't imagine those who lost loved ones to the attacks will ever be the same.

As years continue on after 9/11, I fear the day is being abused by certain money-seeking industries, resulting in the desensitization of everyday citizens.

These days, it's very common to flip the channel to a prime time drama series that uses 9/11 as a plot-kicker for the sake of a fictional storyline.

I'm sure many would agree that the entertainment industry has desensitized much of the world. But what are we to think when certain television producers, businesses and private individuals use events like 9/11 as a mere attention-getter?

But being desensitized by such an event may not even be the worst thing. What about all the families and friends who have been scarred by the 2001 attacks? I would think that such lighthearted focus on one of our nation's most tragic historical events would reopen wounds for people who simply wish to pay their respects and move on.

Of course, I'm not suggesting people forget 9/11. On the contrary, remembering and honoring those we've lost is of utmost importance. Talking about the bravery of the firefighters, police officers, civilians and other heroes who lost their lives trying to save 2001 attack victims is something that should never stop.

But, ultimately, the thought of certain industries using 9/11 as a tool for financial gain, cheap jokes and entertainment is too much to swallow. What ever happened to respect for those who have passed on? What happened to common decency?

Thankfully, more often than not, I think goodness prevails and people practice the necessary respect when addressing 9/11. After all, that was a day of great loss for the American people.

Let us never forget the true impact of that horrific day, 11 years ago.

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