Saturday, October 01, 2005

Two Wins for America on 9/11 Memorials; Multiculturalism Loses

The hate-America, multiculturalism crowd tried their best to destroy all relevant meaning to the memorials planned for “Ground Zero” and for the crash site of “Flight 93", but the unyielding efforts of many brave people who lost loved ones on that day seem to have paid off. We cannot relax, because the Ward Churchills of this world are still out there waiting to pounce, but if we are vigilant, we can continue to honor our history proudly and truthfully.

“Westchester Housewife
Meet Debra Burlingame, who won a battle at Ground Zero.

Saturday, October 1, 2005 12:01 a.m.
The Opinion Journal

Rage renders some people incoherent and others blind. It causes some to flare up--fiercely, but briefly--and then to burn out. In others, it does no more than instill sadness, and paralysis. Yet in Debra Burlingame--the 51-year-old sister of Charles F. "Chic" Burlingame, the pilot of the plane that was crashed into the Pentagon by terrorists on September 11, 2001--rage has fueled eloquence, an impressively mulish obstinacy, and an almost eerie moral clarity.

These are not all virtues, however, if you happen to be--like the founders and planners of the International Freedom Center--the object of that rage. Just this week, George Pataki, New York's governor, ordered the ousting of the Freedom Center from the World Trade Center memorial site: He did so, it should be said, in response to the relentless pressure exerted by Ms. Burlingame and the Take Back the Memorial Movement, a coalition of little platoons of 9/11 family members assembled to boot the Freedom Center off Ground Zero. This is ground that Ms. Burlingame and numerous Americans regard as hallowed; for them, the Freedom Center's apparent mission--the establishment of an educational venue focused more squarely on such matters as the Native American genocide and the Jim Crow South than on the victims and perpetrators of 9/11--was pure anathema, proof not merely of leftist muddle-headedness but also of an elitist contempt for popular feeling.

The Take Back the Memorial Movement's best-known voice--and certainly the most articulate critic of the Freedom Center--is Ms. Burlingame, who started it all on these pages in early June, when she wrote an op-ed essay titled "The Great Ground Zero Heist." In it, she made public the Freedom Center's determination to build a memorial that "stubbornly refuses to acknowledge" 9/11.

"Rather than a respectful tribute to our individual and collective loss," she wrote, "[we] will get a slanted history lesson, a didactic lecture on the meaning of liberty in a post-9/11 world . . . [and] a heaping foreign policy discussion over the greater meaning of Abu Ghraib and what it portends for the country and the rest of the world." She also asked whether it was seemly for the Freedom Center's advisory board to include members who had said that "the only true heroes are those who find ways to defeat the U.S. military" (Columbia's Eric Foner); pushed for the center to highlight how 9/11 had led to the curtailment of civil liberties (the ACLU's Anthony Romero); and led a world-wide "Stop Torture Now" campaign focused on the U.S. military (Michael Posner, of Human Rights First).”


“Architect offers to alter Flight 93 memorial to appease critics

The Associated Press

WASHINGTON - The architect of the memorial to a plane downed in western Pennsylvania on Sept. 11, 2001, said Wednesday he would work to satisfy critics who complained that it honors terrorists with its crescent-shaped design.
Designer Paul Murdoch said he is "somewhat optimistic" that the spirit of the design could be maintained.

"It's a disappointment there is a misinterpretation and a simplistic distortion of this, but if that is a public concern, then that is something we will look to resolve in a way that keeps the essential qualities," Murdoch, 48, of Los Angeles, said in a telephone interview.
Murdoch's design, "Crescent of Embrace," was selected last week during a meeting of the Flight 93 Advisory Commission. It had been one of five finalists, narrowed down from 1,011….

Rep. Tom Tancredo, R-Colo., sent a letter Tuesday to National Park Service Director Fran Mainella saying many have questioned the shape "because of the crescent's prominent use as a symbol in Islam - and the fact that the hijackers were radical Islamists."”

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