9/11, horror of evil though it was, was a polarizing event...it drew most of the world together (while the Palestinians danced on the streets and handed out candy.) It certainly drew Americans together.
One of the memories that stays with me is the incredible solidarity of Americans in the days and weeks afterwards. From every bridge I drove under on the way to work someone had hung an American flag. I used to park my car in a very poor neighborhood to save exorbitant garage fees...and just about every rundown townhouse I walked past had a flag hanging...several just had pictures of American flags drawn with crayons in the windows or on the doors. There was such an ache, and a desire to reach out and go through it together...we all needed a way to express it.
(I was working - or barely working, out of shock - at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore on 9/11. We (my family) were frantic because we had lost touch with my sister who worked a couple blocks from the towers...and she has a disability...but she was finally released from her building which had been turned into a command center, and was able to walk out. My boss's fiance worked in the Pentagon at the time and we waited for hours before hearing he wasn't in the building when it was hit.)