5: Webpage and video clip, members of the United States Congress singing "God Bless America" on September 11th, 2001.
A video and description of Congress singing "God Bless America" on the East Front steps of the Capitol building in the immediate aftermath of the 9/11 attacks.
Suggested Activity: Read the webpage and watch the video together as a class. Ask students: What do you feel watching Congress sing "God Bless America," Democrats and Republicans together, on September 11, 2001? What do you imagine the members of Congress were feeling in that moment? Why do you think they broke out in song? In this particular song? The House webpage mentions that several days later President George W. Bush remarked that, "All of America was touched on the evening of the tragedy to see Republicans and Democrats joined together on the steps of this Capitol singing ‘God Bless America.’” Why might some Americans have found this image touching? What other feelings do you image viewers may have had as they watched this event? What do you imagine Irving Berlin would have thought about this rendering of his song?
Sources: “The Singing of 'God Bless America' on September 11, 2001,” United States House of Representatives Office of the Historian and Office of Art and Archives, September 11, 2001, https://history.house.gov/HistoricalHighlight/Detail/36778, accessed February 8, 2019.