Tuesday, April 25, 2006

I Have No Soul

From the washingtonpost.com:

For emotional wallop, there are few rivals to the windswept, grassy field outside of Shanksville, Pa., where United Airlines Flight 93 crashed on Sept. 11, 2001.

But for three years, that field has made do with a makeshift monument while one member of Congress, Rep. Charles H. Taylor (R-N.C.), has blocked a $10 million request to buy the land for a permanent memorial to the 40 passengers and crew members who overpowered hijackers bent on crashing their jet into the Capitol or the White House....

...."We need to build a memorial for these people," said Rep. William Shuster (R-Pa.), whose district includes Shanksville. "These 40 people were the first counterattack of the war on terror, and they were victorious. We owe them a great debt of gratitude."....

....Taylor infuriated some Flight 93 family members by suggesting a more fitting tribute would be a scholarship fund.

"We believe the land speaks to anyone who goes there and sees the site," said Patrick White, whose cousin Louis Joseph Nacke II died on Flight 93. "It is very moving."

Here's something I didn't expect to find myself saying: Good for Taylor. His reasons for not wanting a memorial federally funded are clear, unambiguous, and hard to argue with. The value of said-memorial is questionable at best. What's of more benefit to the families of those who died on Flight 93? An open, scarred field (complete, one assumes, with a Flight 93 Memorial Gift Shop and McDonald's kiosk)? Or a scholarship fund?

Taylor's acting like an honest-to-God Republican and I, for one, appreciate it. No one seems to have a problem with the government picking up the tab on an estimated 60 million-dollar memorial. But just try suggesting that the People share that tab to the tune of 30 million in taxes, and let's see how important that field really is.

I don't understand this need to stuff-and-mount September 11th on the mantle in order to insure that we don't "forget" it. What, precisely, are we going to forget? Speaking only for myself, that day is seared over my retinas like a man who saw lightning right before dying.

Is a concrete statue in the middle of a Pennsylvanian field really going to be a bulwark in the struggle again National Short Attention Span Disorder? More importantly - should it be? Should our history and our tragedies be reduced to tourist stops and commemorative t-shirts?

Some will say that this is insensitive. That I have no soul. That a memorial to United's flight would never be so tasteless as to include t-shirts. Or a vending tent.

To those people I ask, with sincerity in my heart: Are you F*@%ing retarded? Or have you forgotten the "commemorative" pieces of faux-Twin-Towers-steel sold immediately after the attacks?

Beneath my warm n' cuddly exterior beats the heart of a stone-cold cynic.


At 11:38 AM, Blogger Scott Roche said...

I'm with you on this one. I don't see the point of a memorial.

At 7:57 AM, Blogger codemorse said...

Hey, scott. Glad I'm not alone on this. Personally, I think a scholarship fund is a brilliant idea.

How can you forget Flight 93 when you owe your education to it?


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