Friday, January 26, 2007

Help "Take Back the Memorial"

How much more do the 9/11 families have to go through to get a fitting memorial for all the precious Americans slaughtered on that brutal September day? We who survived the attack owe our support to the families who are trying to get their loved ones memorialized in a way that preserves the personal realities of moms and dads, brothers, sisters, grandmothers, grandfathers, sons and daughters being senselessly slaughtered. These Americans, with hopes and dreams and families that loved them, were taken from all of us. Such heartrending loss cannot be depicted with random names on a slab of concrete. Our heroes deserve better. Here's an excerpt from the "Take Back the Memorial" press release that expresses it better than I can. Read it and then do the right thing. Sign the petition.

The campaign’s first ad, entitled “Missing at the Memorial,” features the familiar images of the missing flyers which were posted all over New York City in the attack’s immediate aftermath by relatives of the victims and which identified their loved ones by age, company, and floor location in the World Trade Center. The flyers became the first spontaneous memorials embraced by the public. The ad says that Mayor R. Bloomberg, chairman of the World Trade Center Memorial Foundation, wants a “cold, random list of names.” Families and former co-workers contend that the current plan to list victims without any personal references, and in an order intended to appear random, robs victims of the human qualities that rallied and sustained the nation. The 9/11 groups believe that narrative information associated with the names will enable future generations to better appreciate how the historic attacks were actually experienced by the country.

“We do not accept that these people died ‘randomly,’ or ‘in no discernable order’ which to future visitors will be exactly the same thing,” said Edith Lutnick, whose brother Gary, 36, worked for the firm of Cantor Fitzgerald on the 104th floor of the North Tower. “Turning human beings into featureless casualties is a distortion of history. Instead of conveying the story of 9/11, this memorial will express the dark point of view of the terrorists who murdered them.”

“My brother, Capt. Billy Burke with Engine 21, didn’t send his men into those towers,” said Michael Burke, who spoke at the press conference, “he led them in. And he did not leave, telling a friend who begged him to get out after tower two fell, ‘This is my job, this is who I am.’ How will visitors get a sense of that, if we don’t tell them?”

Family organizers, survivors and representatives of uniformed service personnel are asking the public to come to the website, Save the Memorial, and sign their online petition asking that the World Trade Center Memorial Foundation list the names of the victims in the manner leaders of 32 family groups and representative supported in a 2004 agreement.

The :60 ad can be view by logging onto