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College Student Argues America Should ‘Get Over’ 9/11 – Here’s Why He’s Wrong

OPINION

We as a nation should “get over” the Sept. 11 terrorists attacks because there are bigger atrocities in this country – like the gender pay gap and white cops shooting black perpetrators.

That was the train of logic offered by a University of Wyoming student recently, who in an op-ed in the school’s student-run newspaper, The Branding Iron, bemoaned what he called all those annoying tributes that pop up in mid-September, like – gasp – American flags put up in lawns and the “blaring” of Lee Greenwood’s “Proud to be an American.”

“But what exactly is being celebrated here?” this undergrad continued. “How is this infectious patriotism honoring anybody as it gets shoved down our throats?”

“Contrary to popular belief, America is not the best country in the world,” he adds. “Acting like it is and boosting our egos at the expense of several thousand lives is downright disgusting.”

“We live in a country where unarmed people of color are shot to death without justification. This same country still struggles with paying women a fair wage. All the while, we neglect to give our children an internationally competitive education. The list of injustices goes on and on, and yet we band together and celebrate our country at a time when pride is the least justifiable reaction.”

Let’s set aside from a moment the callous way in which he speaks of the nearly 3,000 Americans who lost their lives in the terrorist attack – calling honoring their deaths each year “infections” and “disgusting.” And nevermind the hundreds of first responders who died, or the 1,300 children left as orphans.

He actually suggests this tragedy pales in comparison to the gender wage gap, which claims women make 77 cents for every dollar that men make. It’s a popular belief that’s been massively debunked.

While few dispute there is a gender wage gap, the 77 cents number – calculated by the U.S. Census Bureau – does not account for factors surrounding women such as their tendency to leave the workforce when they have children, their education in fields that result in less economic value, and their employment in jobs with more flexible hours and time off.

In fact, former Congressional Budget Office Director June E. O’Neill uses wage data in an analysis to show the 77 cents number is “grossly misleading.”

The student also writes that we are a country “where unarmed people of color are shot to death without justification.” In fairness, this happens.

But so does plenty of black on black crime, and black on white crime – and none of it has the least bit to do with honoring the victims of 9/11.

I don’t say let’s not mark 9/11 because six black men brutally assaulted a white couple and sexually assaulted the woman recently. I don’t say let’s not remember Sept. 11  because of the cold blooded shooting of 22-year-old Christopher Lane by a few “bored” black teens, one of whom tweeted “90% of white ppl are nasty. #HATE THEM.”

As far as interracial murders go, the FBI found that “black on white” homicides occur twice as much as “white on black killings.” In 2011 alone, there were 448 “black on white” murders compared to 193 “white on black” murders.  This rate has held relatively consistent for decades.  What does it have to do with marking 9/11?

I remember sitting in my third grade classroom on that tragic Tuesday morning, just 30 or so miles from the World Trade Center. I was among the many in my class to be pulled out of school early by my parents. As I stepped out of the door of my school building, I could smell the billowing cloud of smoke, ashes and debris that encapsulated the crystal clear sky from just a few hours earlier.

I may not have fully understood it at the time, but that smell was not just a smell of smoke. It was the stench of mass murder. It was the blood shed of nearly 3,000 innocent civilians and hundreds of American heroes.

The real thing that is “infectious” and “disgusting” is the imposition of a Leftist fantasy on a national day of remembrance.

College Fix contributor Michael Cipriano is a student at American University.

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