Twelve years ago, around 8:45 am, I entered the subway station on Broadway and 86th Street. A busy day lay ahead of me: an orientation meeting of the New York State Bar, followed by callback interviews for a summer job, then maybe class if I could make it back uptown in time. But when I emerged from the subway, the world had changed. As I started walking east on 23rd Street I was startled to find clusters of people standing still on the sidewalk, all facing the same direction, many with their mouths wide open. I turned to see what they were seeing, and gasped when I saw the two World Trade Center towers, a ring of smoke around them.
The aftermath of the September 11, 2001 attacks has given us lawyers a lot to chew on: two wars of debatable legality, Guantanamo Bay, and the precarious balance between civil rights and national security, to name just a few things. But today is for remembering. My thoughts are with those who died, those who were left behind, and those who so bravely stepped up on that day.