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Tuesday, November 11, 2014

The World Trade Center memorial

I feel drawn into contemplation with the cleansing rush of water echoing in my ears.
The names inscribed along the stone balustrade are randomly carved and leave space for additions as the forensic medical examiners piece together and identify more victims. 
I notice it is impossible to capture in one photo the rising mirrored tower and the falling water. You are forced to look in both directions with a focus that crops out the other. you have to look both up and down. As I do so, I see my sister and mother nodding "yes" and I feel just looking at the architecture my body is responding.

World trade means world peace and consequently the World Trade Center buildings in New York ... had a bigger purpose than just to provide room for tenants. The World Trade Center is a living symbol of man's dedication to world peace- quote by
Minoru Yamasaki, chief architect of the World Trade Center

The quote makes me quite angry at first. Really? I think.... Are we all about the market place? Is this democracy really a veiled corporatocracy? Is this the way to look at it? Then, with time, I think back to what anthropologists and archaeologists tell us are the beginnings of civilization. In the quest for survival, material and food had to be gathered, so trade posts sprang up and cities like New York came to be. Sure, then wars sprang up over boundaries and resources. In fact... what happened to the Indians who sold "us" Manhattan? All the wars seem to be about just greed, and fear behind the idea that we have not enough. We need more.
I am thankful for the soldiers who have fought and are fighting in our current wars, because I do not want to do it myself. There sacrifices keep the oil prices low and help the oppressed overseas. Most of our terrorists to date have been home grown so I do have doubts about the increased "safety" of our citizens. I believe killing and destroying homes and infrastructure of other lands might have repercussions on the safety of future generations.  Killing begets more killing.
I want to create art, teach kids to see beauty and live in peace. I have enough. I am blessed and thankful that I am a healthy American, with resources, a job, and an education. Though I do not believe war is an answer to the imbalance of resources, I do believe in the idealism of our soldiers and I pray for all sides to find peace so that we end the trauma inflicted on the planet and on each other for generations to come. That is what I prayed for in my own silence at the WTC memorial.
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