911 Day?

Emergency workers: We should honor their contributions in the future on September 11.

September 19, 2001

EVERY DAY they risk their lives so others might live.

They charge into burning buildings, wander down dark alleys, and deliberately put themselves in harm's way to ensure that we're out of it.

But say "cop" to many and they think of the doughnut-eating stereotype. And too many people never think of firefighters at all.

Emergency workers forever proved Americans to be negligent and ignorant in those thoughts last week, when police and firefighters were the just-in-time heroes in the wake of the attacks on New York's World Trade Center.

We should never forget what they did or what they continue to do in New York. So why not commemorate it?

Let's designate Sept. 11 each year as a national day of recognition for police, fire and other emergency and rescue workers.

It'd be no less important than Presidents Day or Veterans Day or Labor Day. Parades. Ceremonies. The day could include anything that celebrates not just the special occasions when emergency workers save lives, but also their daily efforts to make this country livable.

We'll already remember Sept. 11 as the day our world changed -- and not for the better. But setting it aside to honor emergency workers would allow us to draw a glimmer of hope from what will be such a dark memory.

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