Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Ground Zero - what's in a name?

The endless bickering over the 9/11 Memorial is becoming an embarrassment to the memory of the victims. The latest imbroglio is over the placement of the names. It appears the familes are arguing to have the names grouped by company affliation and what floor and what tower they died in and so on. With due respect to grief of the victim's families, this strikes me as odd and elitist. What is it that they want to keep them in their earthly cubicles for? Are they afraid their loved one's name might end up next to a janitor or something?

The NYT gets this one right. These thousands of people died randomly and suddenly without deference to their position. The dead belong to the families but all Americans suffered the horror and in a way the grief belongs to all of us. And collectively the 9/11 dead have been used repeatedly as a symbol by our president to justify his programs and personify his war. Thus have the whole become more important than the individual dead. They must be memoralized with the same disregard to their position. To group by status is to deny the importance of those of less stature who also lost their lives.

A random placement would more accurately reflect the event that changed our world and would honor each victim equally.
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2 Comments:

Blogger Kvatch said...

I torn on this issue. Somehow I'd like to see the firefighters, policeman, and rescue workers who died at Ground Zero be given some special recognition. But then...it was their job, their duty, and maybe I'm just being counter-elitist.

1:44:00 AM  
Anonymous Libby said...

Well, I didn't think of that and maybe they should get some special recognition because they went into the building on purpose to rescue others but the idea of segregating the random victims doesn't seem right to me.

8:06:00 AM  

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