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Living History at Ground Zero
Townhall.com ^ | July 18, 2014 | Suzanne Fields

Posted on 07/18/2014 7:27:37 AM PDT by Kaslin

New York -- New York, New York, a wonderful town. (The Bronx is up, and the Battery's down.)

Sometimes derided in what New Yorkers call "flyover country," Gotham is nevertheless a microcosm of America with its many immigrant and ethnic cultures, the work of immigrants who first clung together in self-made ghettos with shops, stores and restaurants to recall the places left behind. When these immigrants make enough money, they usually move out to more inclusive neighborhoods.

New York was built by legal immigrants. At Ellis Island, where more than 12 million immigrants made their first stop in America between 1892 and 1954, a tour guide tells the story -- perhaps apocryphal, but it could be true -- about an arriving immigrant who wore a signboard because he spoke no English, saying he wanted to go to Houston, meaning the street on the Lower East Side, then a Jewish neighborhood. He was by mistake put on a train to Houston, Texas -- where he settled and struck oil.

These were the days and years of happier immigration. There was no chaos on the border, few questions about who was legal and who was not. It was difficult for those immigrants to get here and difficult to go back. Everyone came to stay, climb into the melting pot and become an American. New York is a city in constant change, swinging between the pride of e pluribus unum -- "out of many, one" -- and the discomfort that accompanies multicultural and economic differences. The roiling debate over illegal immigration sometimes leads us to forget that we are all immigrants. Ronald Reagan once remarked that America is the only country in the world where a new citizen is as American as a citizen descended from a forebear who arrived two or three centuries ago.

But New York is also different from the rest of America, with its sophisticated culture in avant-garde art galleries, museums, expensive couturiers, gourmet restaurants and an abundance of upscale organic, vegan and gluten-free markets to suit the precious and the trendy. On the upper reaches of income, the 1-percenters are status-conscious, acquisitive consumers who can afford almost any luxury the city offers.

New York is the melting pot that never quite melts, with some of the poorest driven by hope of "moving on up," to achieve and become rich in the way of the millions who did it before, and with a shrinking middle class of young people moving away when they want to start families because they can't afford Manhattan rents.

What draws New Yorkers together today is the memory of Sept. 11, 2001, and the rebuilt ground zero. The new National September 11 Memorial Museum has opened next to the Freedom Tower, rising from the ashes like the mythical Phoenix, testifying to the defiance of an obscene Islamist attempt to humble and humiliate.

The sacred and the secular are mixed at the museum at ground zero, documenting both what was lost and the spirit of what survives. The lost get personalities in portraits with touching detail that rises above grim statistics. Cherished artifacts, a pair of shoes, a pair of eyeglasses, a fireman's helmet, a medal, bring life to democracy's Valley of the Kings. Grief remains palpable in the descent into dark reflection, a pilgrimage warmed by hope of never again. A dramatic abstract sculpture created by the force of impact when one of the airplanes crashed into the North Tower between floors 93 and 99, agitates the imagination with pity and fear, steel twisted in agony and loss.

The slurry wall, 64 feet of poured concrete that kept out the Hudson River, survives, a monolith preserved as though an archaeological remnant of an ancient civilization. It's a triumph of engineering, an emblem of the human spirit, cracked but unbowed. A surveillance video showing the hijackers going through airport security on the fateful morning unsettles but demands attention. Some critics have railed against the use of the word "jihad" in the museum's narrative about 9/11, but the word is both reminder and touchstone for diligence in the continuing pursuit of evil men who are determined to kill us.

This week, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder warned that Islamist fighters from Europe and the United States who went to fight in Syria have learned new technology from bomb-makers in Yemen, and some have been sent home with an assignment to do harm.

The Memorial Museum reminds New Yorkers and the rest of us to love thy neighbor, but beware of thy enemies. Two granite basins of rippling water fill the footprints of the destroyed twin towers, tears of grief and mourning -- and of renewal and the will to fight back.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial
KEYWORDS: groundzero; newyorkcity

1 posted on 07/18/2014 7:27:37 AM PDT by Kaslin
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To: Kaslin
A story about the memorial at ground zero is 75% about legal immigrants, maybe I'm jaded and just don't trust the media but that seemed to jump out at me.

And then there's this:

But New York is also different from the rest of America, with its sophisticated culture in avant-garde art galleries, museums, expensive couturiers, gourmet restaurants and an abundance of upscale organic, vegan and gluten-free markets to suit the precious and the trendy. On the upper reaches of income, the 1-percenters are status-conscious, acquisitive consumers who can afford almost any luxury the city offers.

Maddox is right, New Yorkers just can't stop talking about NYC.

NYC is such an awesome place, I get it, but they aren't the only place with a sophisticated scene. If it's a liberal city, you can count on words like that being in the article. SF comes to mind.

2 posted on 07/18/2014 7:34:59 AM PDT by Lx (Do you like it? Do you like it, Scott? I call it, "Mr. & Mrs. Tenorman Chili.")
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To: Kaslin

Sorry, Suzanne, but most New Yorkers have either forgotten about SEP 11 2001 or use the event to bash conservatives and the US overall.

NYC could disappear from the face of the earth this afternoon and the US would be all the better for it.

I, for one, wouldn’t bat an eyelash if such a thing happened.


3 posted on 07/18/2014 7:37:19 AM PDT by Arm_Bears (Rope. Tree. Politician. Some assembly required.)
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To: Lx
with a sophisticated scene

This definition seems to apply to both NYC and SF -

sophistication (n.) early 15c., "use of sophistry; fallacious argument intended to mislead; adulteration; an adulterated or adulterating substance,"

4 posted on 07/18/2014 7:40:34 AM PDT by knittnmom (Save the earth! It's the only planet with chocolate!)
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To: Arm_Bears

Interesting I don't see the New York State flag on your page

5 posted on 07/18/2014 7:41:13 AM PDT by Kaslin (He needed the ignorant to reelect him, and he got them. Now we all have to pay the consequenses)
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To: Kaslin

Believe me, if my Catholic grandparents knew that “New York, New York, a wonderful town” would someday become the child sacrifice alter of the world they would not have left Budapest.


6 posted on 07/18/2014 7:44:28 AM PDT by huldah1776
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To: Arm_Bears

As jaded and cynical as I am, I don’t think they’ve forgotten about it. They smelled the burning for a long time and the thought of what they were smelling is chilling. You don’t forget that. They may want to move forward, we all do but I don’t think the average American has forgotten about it.


7 posted on 07/18/2014 7:50:16 AM PDT by Lx (Do you like it? Do you like it, Scott? I call it, "Mr. & Mrs. Tenorman Chili.")
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To: Kaslin; All

As Fox was showing the crash site of the plane shot down, there was a shot of a tall cross sticking up out of the debris similar to the cross at the twin towers debris.
It was probably a telephone pole- but the shot was quite striking. Did anyone else see this?


8 posted on 07/18/2014 8:10:26 AM PDT by patriot08 (NATIVE TEXAN (girl type))
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To: Kaslin

So I’m not allowed to have an opinion about New York simply because I don’t have a New York flag on my page?


9 posted on 07/18/2014 8:47:38 AM PDT by Arm_Bears (Rope. Tree. Politician. Some assembly required.)
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To: Arm_Bears
Yes you can have an opinion, but how would you know that New Yorkers have forgotten about 9/11? Have they told you that? I doubt it very much. There might be some who have forgotten the terrible day, but I doubt that there are many who have
10 posted on 07/18/2014 9:10:53 AM PDT by Kaslin (He needed the ignorant to reelect him, and he got them. Now we all have to pay the consequenses)
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To: patriot08

You mean of the Malaysian Airliner?


11 posted on 07/18/2014 9:13:54 AM PDT by Kaslin (He needed the ignorant to reelect him, and he got them. Now we all have to pay the consequenses)
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To: Kaslin

Yes. The one shot down over the Ukraine.


12 posted on 07/18/2014 9:18:02 AM PDT by patriot08 (NATIVE TEXAN (girl type))
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To: Kaslin

I guess that’s why it’s only taken 10+ years to come up with a permanent memorial to the event.

Besides, if Miss Suzanne can presume to speak on behalf of New York, why can’t I?


13 posted on 07/18/2014 9:32:17 AM PDT by Arm_Bears (Rope. Tree. Politician. Some assembly required.)
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To: patriot08
Are you talking about this with the arrow pointing at?

I believe these are power lines as the last 2 pictures and especially the last picture clearly shows


14 posted on 07/18/2014 9:34:20 AM PDT by Kaslin (He needed the ignorant to reelect him, and he got them. Now we all have to pay the consequenses)
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To: Kaslin

No, It was like this shot- only very close. Single ‘cross’, very strikingly similar to the 9/11 cross:

http://fox4kc.com/2014/07/17/malaysian-airliner-crashes-in-ukraine/ Scroll down to 2nd video:
Start at 1:57


15 posted on 07/18/2014 10:39:51 AM PDT by patriot08 (NATIVE TEXAN (girl type))
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To: Kaslin

Wish I could do a ‘screen capture’ but have forgotten how.


16 posted on 07/18/2014 10:43:21 AM PDT by patriot08 (NATIVE TEXAN (girl type))
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To: Kaslin
This is as close as I can find of the 'cross' at the plane crash site. The one of TV was just a flash, easily missed- but close up and at a different angle. Very striking and very scarily reminiscent of the 9/11 cross Image and video hosting by TinyPic Image and video hosting by TinyPic
17 posted on 07/18/2014 11:42:49 AM PDT by patriot08 (NATIVE TEXAN (girl type))
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To: Kaslin

I know they are telephone poles, but they still make for a striking photo.


18 posted on 07/18/2014 11:57:48 AM PDT by patriot08 (NATIVE TEXAN (girl type))
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To: Kaslin

I don’t have a NY flag on my page either ,, but I know that in my aunts part of Brooklyn the Arabs were celebrating on 09/11/2001 ,, and when I was last in the city , summer 2007 , I had a good argument with an ACLU supporter collecting signatures for something to do with the Blind Sheik ... oh yes ,, she was collecting signatures near Washingtons inauguration site very near the towers. Most New Yorkers were accommodating her and agreed with her ... they might not have forgotten 09/11 .. but being ignorant liberals they have no perspective.

OH , just so you understand I have valid NY credentials and am allowed to have an opinion ,, my parents are both New Yorkers and I grew up in Albany.


19 posted on 07/18/2014 1:08:22 PM PDT by Neidermeyer
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To: Neidermeyer

You do indeed.


20 posted on 07/18/2014 1:37:32 PM PDT by Kaslin (He needed the ignorant to reelect him, and he got them. Now we all have to pay the consequenses)
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To: patriot08

Good catch


21 posted on 07/18/2014 1:54:58 PM PDT by Kaslin (He needed the ignorant to reelect him, and he got them. Now we all have to pay the consequenses)
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To: Kaslin

txs


22 posted on 07/18/2014 2:26:33 PM PDT by patriot08 (NATIVE TEXAN (girl type))
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