How 9/11 Changed Us Forever 20 Years Later

how 9/11 changed us forever

Today is a very somber day for all Americans. It’s the 20th anniversary of the terrorist attacks on New York’s Twin Towers at 1 World Trade Center (WTC).

How 9/11 Changed Us Forever

Photo taken of New York the night before the attacks. By the next morning, approximately 3000 people had lost their lives

An event that not only ended the lives of 2,977 innocent people, but that also changed things in everyone’s lives forever.

twin tower explosions

It was the first time many Americans truly felt vulnerable and afraid, leaving us unsure of our power as a nation, questioning the capabilities of our intelligence agencies and our leaders as protectors.

9/11 photo in photo by Jason Powell, Flickr

We became aware of terms like “sleeper cells” and “The Taliban.” The TSA was born and we can no longer board airplanes without taking off our shoes or removing tweezers and nail clippers from our luggage.

The future of urban architecture would be affected as escape routes and the ability to withstand explosions took on new importance.

inside the 9/11 memorial

We passed The Patriot Act only six weeks after the attacks (we were scared, dammit). This changed long-standing rules meant to protect Americans from “unreasonable search and seizure” in the name of national security.

tribute image by House of Neon

In 2008 we passed the FISA Amendments Act. This law gave the NSA nearly unchecked authorities to eavesdrop on American phone calls, text messages and emails under the premise of targeting foreign nationals suspected of terrorism.

Tribute art by Banksy in Manhattan, 2001 (since removed)
Tribute art by Banksy in Manhattan, 2001 (since removed)

We started an endless “War on Terror” that seems to have, ironically and horrifically, caused as much hate within our own country as against other threatening countries.

remembering september 11
artist unknown

There have been countless documentaries about 9/11 in the past 20 years (17 new ones this year alone). Here are seven worth watching that aren’t just replaying the tragedy or focused on human interest stories.

If It’s Hip, It’s Here has written several posts over the years about everything from rebuilding to remembering 9/11. Below are a few of our past posts:

• A Look At The Designs of The 911 Memorial Monument and Museum:
65 photos at

• Remember:

• A Tribute in Time Lapse:

• The New Logo and its 6 Symbolic Meanings:

The image at the top of this post is a crop of the cover of the September 24, 2001 issue of the New Yorker by Art Spiegelman and wife Françoise Mouly:
new yorker 911 cover by art spiegelman

never forget art
artist unknown