As time goes on, I think we sometimes forget the meaning behind various rituals and actions. We fail to take the time to truly reflect on what matters. We forget why a day is important or even how to respectfully observe a day that might have changed a country’s history.
Tuesday marked 17 years since 9/11, a day that I feel we can all agree should be observed with respect. With that in mind, I was disappointed to see Truman State University did not move the flag on The Quad to half-staff. Perhaps the University has what they view as a legitimate reason behind this, but for someone who was raised to understand flag etiquette, I was more than a little let down.
Sec. 9.134 RSMo is a piece of legislation that, simply put, suggests government buildings and all others flying a flag to move their flag to half-staff from sunrise to sunset in observance of 9/11. This is one small way we can pay respects to those who died in terrorists’ attacks 17 years ago.
More so, I think there are appropriate and inappropriate ways to go about recognizing days like 9/11. On Tuesday, Sodexo decorated and made red, white and blue cupcakes. While I appreciate the attempt to foster observance, I don’t think this was necessarily the way to do so. I believe there was a motivation that came from the kindest of places, but I also think cupcakes and decorations suggest a celebration and might lead to the wrong idea.
Quite honestly, it’s more than the wrong placement of a flag. Small things like this give way to us forgetting why these small rituals matter. Seventeen years ago, our country was torn apart and pulled back together. I, for one, don’t want that forgotten, and I don’t want that part of our history lost. Our country has enough working against it as is.