A Day That Will Live In Infamy

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorHigh School, 11th grade February 2008

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A Day That Will Live in Infamy As of September 11th, 2001, life as the American people know it has been changed forever. The terrorist attacks that were committed on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon left thousands of people dead or missing, and they left the people of America in a state of shock. Sitting back in this terrorized state instead of fighting back is no way to wage the war against terrorism. The only way to rid the world of terror is by exterminating the very people that create it, as suggested in the poem, "If We Must Die," by Claude McKay. James Weldon Johnson, a literary critic, stated that in this particular poem, McKay writes "in a manner that strikes terror" and he "pours out the bitterness and rebellion in his heart" (Popkin 292). If thousands of innocent Americans are killed, it is crucial that the United States as a whole, like McKay's mutinous attitude, should rebel against the cowards that performed these unthinkable acts, and at the very least, let the victims of the attacks on America die a noble death.

Every line of McKay's poem (except one segment in line ten) fully embodies the events of September 11th.

"If we must die, let it not be like hogs / Hunted and penned in an inglorious spot" (lines 1-2). The harmless and innocent people that were slain were certainly destroyed like hogs, slaughtered and hunted in a place which is now at a loss for glory, as well as existence. The terrorist groups in Afghanistan have been plotting the demise of Americans for years, waiting for the perfect opportunity to strike. Two commercial airline jets struck the two towers of the World Trade Center in New York City without any sort of warning, making the...