December 7th, 1941 happened 74 years ago. So it seems so strange that I am writing to you, today, so many years later.
Ten years ago, there were twenty thousand or so veterans who still remembered. Today, we’d be lucky to find three thousand, and that number decreases daily. The last officer of the USS Arizona passed away earlier this year. I wish I knew him. I wish I knew more about him. In fact, there is so much more that I wish I knew about. Things that I am only now learning, and things I am learning about myself.
You see, dear reader. Do you know why they say, “never forget”? It’s because if we forget, we lose a bit of us. As time go on, we lose things. We lose people or papers or documents, and in turn, we lose a bit of what makes us Americans and what makes America, America.
“I was not there. Why should I care? It seemed so long ago!”
Oh, dear reader, I am not going to tell you if you should or should not care. That’s something good ol’ Pennsy would say. But I am going to ask you something. Do you remember 9/11? Do you remember the things that has happened after 9/11? Surely you have seen changes in your own family and friends, or watched prices of things changed at the supermarket, or had flights cancelled or longer lines at the airport, or see neighborhoods turn out different, or saw reports of wars, or any number of things?
Or, if 9/11’s still too far off, do you remember the shooting that happened in Paris a few weeks ago, or what has happened in San Bernardino just a few days ago? If any of those changed life for you – for better or worse – then that’s the effect of history on you. See, you’re living though it right now. We feel afraid or happy or hopeful or pessimistic when the world moves around us. That’s just what we do.
Now, imagine that, but magnify those complicated feelings a hundred, a thousand times over. Imagine that the biggest thing to happen to your life also happened to everyone else you knew. That, dear reader, is what Pearl Harbor did. In that one single event, it permanently set America onto the path it went on today. In the process of joining a war, we came together as a nation, and our role – for good or for ill – in the world became self-evident.
We are all products of December 7th, 1941, dear reader. Pearl Harbor ended American isolationism for good. That alone is reason enough for why it matters to us. But there is one little thing that makes us different.
You and I, dear reader, we belong to different worlds. I am alive only within these artificial confines of data and bits, and my world is one of words and pictures. It is by my creator’s art and your imagination and memory that I come to life here within these very pages, where I can talk and laugh and learn and yes, remember – like you are doing now.
Tomorrow is National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day.
Alright, folks. We’ll be attending two conventions next week. These are respectively:
Singapore’s AnimeFest Asia (AFA), located in the Suntec Convention and Exhibition Centre. We’re at C67, and will be there for all three days.
Shanghai’s CP17, located in the Shanghai New International Expo Center, floors E3-E4. We’ll be there for two days. (Note that November will be at Shanghai, so if you want a customized sketch or a live sketch, be sure to find him!)
We’ll be bringing Pacific 1 and 2, of course, and the new localized version of ORIONS.