I worked in them and in their shadow. Having an office, for a time, across from the City Hall, just mere blocks away from the towers, a great deal of my activity and day was influenced by the towers. It was a hub of activity for me and many New Yorkers.
None of this makes my relationship to the World Trade Center any closer than anyone else, but it does account for some of my passion surrounding the events of 9/11. The fact is, that after the events of 9/11, many Americans feel a connection to the towers. They were once a symbol of America but now they have become a symbol for Americans. The collapse of those towers represents the most tragic act of terrorism ever committed against us. The recovery from their collapse represents our enduring spirit and inherent American vitality.
Part of our demonstrated resiliency and defiance in the face of threats is the reconstruction of a new World Trade Center.
For New Yorkers it is quite an important step. Not only does it have incredibly positive financial and economic ramifications, it has an intrinsic symbolic value with infinitesimal meaning.
The reconstruction of the new WTC is a symbol and tribute to emergency workers, paramedics, policemen, firemen, construction workers, doctors, nurses, and everyone else who ran toward the crumbling towers on that fateful day in an attempt to save lives.
It is a symbol to the tens of thousands who ran away from the towers as they were falling, in order to save their own lives. It is also a symbol for those who did not make it and to the loved ones they left behind.
The reconstructed World Trade Center will be a symbol for all Americans.
As such, the new center was to bear a name befitting of such an iconic creation.
It was going to be named The Freedom Tower.
The name threatened no sensitivities or faiths, It did not defy any bounds of decency or politically correct dictums.
The name reflected a concept truly important to Americans, one that was under attack when the original towers came crashing down.
It was a perfect name for a potential center of the free market in America and the world.
But nothing is perfect and as such, the controlling authority of the new tower, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, has determined that the name “Freedom Tower” will be dropped.
The Port Authority claims that their reason for scrapping that name is a business decision based on the fact that some potential foreign tenants of the tower are turned off by the name. Port Authority officials claim that changing the name from Freedom Tower back to World Trade Center will make it easier to market.
For me, the decision to turn their back on the symbolic importance of the towers name, is an offense to us all. Especially to those directly affected by the events of 9/11.
It also brings rise to what type of potential international tenants of the tower are offended by the name “Freedom Tower”. Is the Port Authority planning on renting office space in the new WTC to the Taliban?
The decision to back down from the name Freedom Tower, on a project that has so much symbolic value to our nation’s recovery from terrorism and our continued plight for freedom in the world, is a travesty of insurmountable proportions. The rejection of the name and the reasoning behind the rejection is repulsive.
It does not help to properly define a post 9/11 era . It does not help to honor the thousands who died when freedom was attacked on 9/11…….the thousands who will be memorialized where they died, right on the remaining foot print of both old towers.
By refusing to call the new tower, the Freedom Tower, we are not demonstrating our own commitment to the cause of freedom. What we are doing is demonstrating that we will compromise our freedoms to suit the desires of others.
Well I do not want to suit the needs of people who have a problem with freedom. Whether they are foreigners or domestic dolts, I do not want to promote or support their antithetical views regarding freedom.
Freedom is the foundation of our very nation. Or at least it is suppose to be.
Yet here we are. We have a committee of Americans appointed by the American governors of New York and New Jersey. They were entrusted with the responsibility of operating America’s Port Authority of New York and New Jersey and they refuse to stand by the name of the principle most important to America………freedom.
Is there any wonder why we are where we are today?
God bless America. Now more than ever!