Today is September 11.
It’s a day of remembrance, of sorrow, and of humble reflection.
9/11 is remembered as the worst terrorist attack on American soil, ever, and rightfully so.
It’s a terrible black mark on American history.
Twenty-two years later, however, and it seems that the 9/11 terrorist attacks are a darker stain on U.S. history than anyone could’ve imagined.
Co-founder and CEO of The Federalist, Sean Davis, posted a sobering retrospective on X, formerly Twitter, and, frankly, it’s hard to dispute any of his salient points that 9/11 looks like the beginning of the end of America as everyone knew it.
The first point that Davis makes is a harrowing reminder about the second most unconstitutional thing the government has done since the turn of the millennium: The Patriot Act.
For the unfamiliar, The Patriot Act was a landmark act codified by then-President George W. Bush in 2001.
In short, it gave sweeping new powers to the government, allowing them unprecedented access to Americans, and ways to circumvent due process laws.
In short, it looks like George Bush walked so modern government officials could run.
Whether you want to go back a couple years to the wild government overreach that characterized the COVID-19 response, or just a couple days to the New Mexico governor’s brazen gun grab, it’s clear that the DNA of The Patriot Act is alive and well today.
Davis’ second point is perhaps even more alarming than the first — 9/11 emboldened America’s out-of-control military-industrial complex.
A pair of disastrous and utterly unfruitful wars in Iraq and Afghanistan promptly followed the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
Now, you would think that, given the catastrophic way that President Joe Biden withdrew the troops from the Middle East, America would reconsider wantonly sending resources and American lives to address foreign conflicts.
The untold billions of dollars that America continues to send to Ukraine is proof positive that the country’s top officials haven’t learned squat from past errors. Or, if they have learned something, they’ve clearly learned all the wrong lessons.
Davis’ last point may not have the immediate reverberations that his other two points two, but is still yet another harrowing takeaway from the response to 9/11.
Namely, America accrued incredible debt during that time, and no, that issue has not gotten any better with the three ensuing presidents that have followed Bush.
According to the U.S. Treasury, the country is over $32 trillion in debt. That’s a horrifying figure that future generations of Americans are being saddled with.
Look, it might be a bit hyperbolic to suggest that 9/11 was, in fact, the end of the great American experiment as everyone knows it.
But looking at the steps the country has taken following that horrific terrorist attack, it’s inarguable that the country has irrevocably changed (just look at airports today, versus 1999) and it’s changed for the worse.
So please, remember, grieve, mourn — do what you must today.
But never forget the wildly wrong lessons that America seems to have learned on that tragic day. The future of this country might depend on it.