External Reflection

Last Thursday passed without ceremony, another blur in the daily grind of most Andover students. Few students noticed the flag flying at half-mast or raised their voices in commemoration of the 13th anniversary of the most devastating day in recent American history. Although the bell tower did not toll as intended because it was broken, the silence was only further emphasized by the absence of acknowledgement: There was no formal ceremony, no quiet remembrance and no email recognition until the following day.

The terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 shook our nation to its very core. Although we were children at the time, many of us can still remember the national terror of the attack on home turf and how it shattered the shroud of false safety and privilege that had previously blinded many Americans to the reality of the outside world. It popped the “American Bubble”; this year, we remained comfortably within the “Andover Bubble” on September 11.

This state of oblivion is unacceptable. We often talk of the “Andover Bubble” as a joke, but there is nothing funny about our own apathy. Our isolation from the outside world is a choice: Students can and should be more engaged and aware of the world. With the proliferation of social media sites and the ever-increasing digitalization of news, there is an abundance of different forms of media gauged towards students. “The Skimm” sends a concise overview of the top news directly to your inbox every morning; “The Week” aggregates global news within a few easily understandable pages every week; even automatic CNN updates on your phone add a little bit of perspective.

The lede article in the “New York Times” on September 16 detailed the recruitment of young Turkish teenagers to ISIS. We often forget that the news on print is someone else’s reality: Just a continent away, people our age are facing devastating problems on a daily basis, while we are sweating about a calculus test.

We encourage ourselves in the newsroom to engage in the outside world and hope our peers will do the same. As our own attempt to ease this small burden of staying engaged, we have created a small, new column inside of our News section called “Tweets of the Trade.” It consists of journalistic Tweets from sources such as the “Associate Press,” the “New York Times” and the “Wall Street Journal.” In the spirit of common humanity, it is our responsibility to learn about and remember what lies outside the Andover town limits.

_This editorial represents the views of _The Phillipian_ Editorial Board CXXXVII._