The events that transpired on September 11, 2001 changed our world. If you ask anyone where they were when the twin towers were hit, they could tell you with certainty. After the wildly successful, happy go lucky decades of the Eighties and Nineties, Americans naturally thought they were untouchable and free from this type of horrific event. Most people believed those types of imaginable events only happened across the globe in third world countries. The event forever known as 911 hit Americans collectively in the gut with the realization that they were not safe anymore, and probably never would feel happy go lucky again.
They say pictures are worth a thousand words. The photographs and videos of the smoking, flame ridden towers played with our collective minds, burning an indelible impression of the certain atrocities that were taking place inside. Susan Sontag wrote in her "Looking at War" essay that "photographs of an atrocity may give rise to opposing responses: a call for peace, or a cry for revenge; or simply the bemused awareness.that terrible things happen." (Sontag 86) The photographs of 911 did all that; they made us more aware that only peace is safe, incensed us to the point of wanting to kill those responsible, and made us aware that bad things definitely can and do happen.
The Winner of the 2002 Pulitzer Prize for Breaking News Photography went to the New York Times for their many amazing and gutwrenching photographs of that fateful day of September 11, 2001. The photographs captured events more horrific than most people have ever dreamed were possible. Not even in the movies were there scenes as grisly and grotesque as the images of 911. The human suffering evident in the photographs was unimaginable. Sontag writes that "the suffering most often deemed worthy of representation is that which is understood to be the product of wrath, divine or human.