Monday, May 08, 2006

The Thought That Counts

As construction began this week at the World Trade Center site, an increasingly nasty debate has erupted over the ballooning pricetag of the Ground Zero memorial, the safety of the planned underground museum, and the emotions entangled with the design that was selected without much public input.

Some question the concern over the price when more is being spent by the city to build stadiums. Others lament the use of the issue to further politicized agendas, and the governors of New York and New Jersey demanding that the pricetag be slashed in half. Meanwhile some victims family members are skewering the design itself saying that it doesn't do enough to honor those who died.

This is out of hand. The point of a memorial is for those who see it to remember what happened there. It shouldn't matter whether it costs $1 billion or $500 million or $49.99 with free shipping and handling. Do we really need giant reflecting pools and underground waterfalls to appreciate the severity of 9/11?

Super-artsy architecture and futuristic designs and glass cases with 9/11 artifacts are all well and good, but in the end it's the thought, or the thoughts of the people who view whatever winds up being there, that counts.

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