9/11 Empathy

One of my professors was talking about how hard it is to empathize with those who died on 9/11 because empathy requires that one be able to fully imagine themselves in the plight of another. He went on to say how the situation faced by those trapped in the World Trade Center was so bad that it's incredibly difficult for many people to truly imagine themselves in that kind of situation - for example, the idea of imagining yourself at the top of the building feeling terrified of the fire but having no choice but to be forced to the edge of the building and even jump out. He mentioned a saying "out of the frying pan and into the fire." It got me really thinking about just how the unimaginably horrific the situation was for people who had no hope of survival. 

I've dealt with "no hope" situations before. As bad as they were, they were a millionth of the situation that these individuals were in yet I still felt extreme dread that I could barely handle. I guess that means I just can't comprehend the fear felt on 9/11. 

I know this forum is mostly college guys and analysts, so most people were not past elementary school when it happened. An alum was giving a talk at my school last year about how he was in the South Tower when the first plane hit. He mentioned how all the non traders at his firm evacuated but that the traders had to stay because because the magnitude of the situation hadn't been realized yet, and they later all died. 

I was an infant during this, but I just can't imagine the fear felt by the people involved.  

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Comments (8)

Sep 10, 2021 - 8:42pm

He makes a valid point but the empathy doesn't necessarily have to be so visceral for it to be meaningful. I, for example, will always respect and empathize with 9/11 victims and the affected family/friends (was affected myself)

  • 1
Sep 10, 2021 - 8:54pm

I know what you mean and that normandy scene you're showing was absolutely fucking crazy. And yes there's no way you can truly understand the pain, definitely agree there, but I'm just saying at no point should you feel like you owe it to anyone to have to feel what they went through. We still have a lifetime ahead of us and honestly at some point we could be dropped into some crazy shit if the situation dictated it, who knows what'll happen.

  • 1
Sep 11, 2021 - 12:23pm

Fuck man. I never thought about the traders. Shit. Imagine loosing your life for some numbers on a screen. I really can't fathom. Fuck and I thought the jumping out of the building was scary to think about and now this story of traders being required to stay behind due to "oh it's just a plane crashing into the building no biggie". Rest in peace for those who died and sacrificed their life. I am not from America but thank you to those who fought to push back terrorism too. We are very grateful. Without you guys our countries would have been the next victims of these attacks. Stay safe and kiss your loved ones every night and every morning. God bless all of you.

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Sep 11, 2021 - 12:35pm

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