9-11-02

The Anniversary Is Upon Us. How Should We Remember the Day?

JERMAINE ONWUBERE
Age 30
Resides Manhattan
Occupation Academic administrator

Should September 11 be a national holiday? No. It was a tragedy. To me, a holiday is centered around a celebration. I think George Bush is using 9-11 as an excuse to be a warmonger. When the economy's down and people are losing their jobs, let's go to war. It's also being used as an excuse to wage war against Iraq. The UN inspectors haven't been allowed into Iraq, so we can't know what kinds of weapons they have. Most Americans don't travel and they're not aware of the image of the United States outside the country. People who are patriotic don't understand that when the U.S. gets involved in the business of another sovereign nation, there's always an economic subtext. Never a moral one.

Should images from last year's attacks be rebroadcast on television? No. I think it's been overplayed as it is. We're desensitized to it. I wasn't personally affected by the attacks, so I can only imagine what the families are going through. September 11 has been totally distorted.

What are your plans for September 11, 2002? I really don't have any. I was invited to hear a friend sing at a memorial service but I'm not sure if I'm going to go.


LISA
Age 30
Resides Manhattan
Occupation Designer

Should September 11 be a national holiday? I'd have to say no, because if we stop working and stop doing what we do, then the terrorists have won. We should take a moment to remember, but we shouldn't not work on that day.

Should images from last year's attacks be rebroadcast on television? I have mixed feelings. I just feel bad for the families. I'll never forget the image of Sixth Avenue just frozen, everyone in the street looking downtown and pointing. When the Con Edison plant was on fire this summer you could see people out in the street in the same way. Now I'm very aware of airplanes. I hear a plane headed for LaGuardia, and wonder if they always came in so low over my apartment.

What are your plans for September 11, 2002? I hope I'll get to leave the office early. I think I'll take some flowers by the firehouse in my neighborhood. They lost six guys.


JESSE GANNON
Age 21
Resides Manhattan
Occupation Student

Should September 11 be a national holiday? I don't think it should be a holiday because a lot of businesses try to capitalize on holidays. September 11 could be a kind of day of remembrance where everyone stops for a moment of silence to reflect on what happened. It can't fall into the same category as something like Labor Day.

Should images from last year's attacks be rebroadcast on television? I don't have a problem with it. They've played so much of that footage already. They should make a statement before they start so that anyone who wants to turn it off—including family members who lost people in the attacks—will be able to.

What are your plans for September 11, 2002? I haven't really thought about it. Last year I was downtown waiting for the bus when the planes hit. The event is so commercial now. There are people downtown selling all kinds of things. Two days later the attacks, I saw a woman wearing a T-shirt that said, "America Under Attack!" with a picture of the twin towers. They'd made it that fast.


MATT GRZYWINSKI
Age 26
Resides Manhattan
Occupation Architect

Should September 11 be a national holiday? Are we celebrating it or commemorating it? Is it on a par with Pearl Harbor? I think so. If we commemorate it are we commemorating the terrorists who did it? However we do it, it shouldn't be a day off where you go out and have fun. That wouldn't be appropriate.

Should images from last year's attacks be rebroadcast on television? I saw it happen live from 12 blocks away, so I don't think seeing it again on video would bother me. It's something that will be forever ingrained in my memory. The danger with replaying the videos is that you become desensitized.

What are your plans for September 11, 2002? I'll probably be working that day. I might go to Union Square. What happened there last year was nice. Impromptu and sincere.


KAREN MCDONALD
Age 30
Resides Brooklyn
Occupation Circulation coordinator

Should September 11 be a national holiday? Yes, for the mere fact that a lot of people died. There's a statewide holiday for victims of the Oklahoma City bombing and all the lives that were lost there. I don't think you'd run the risk of people forgetting what the day was commemorating if you made it a national holiday. Even if other Americans forgot what September 11 was about, New Yorkers wouldn't.

Should images from last year's attacks be rebroadcast on television? No, because it effected everybody. Nobody wants to relive it. It's alive in our memories. I was just thinking about this. Seeing the images again on television is going to be more dramatic than just remembering them. You're more likely to cry when you see them because you can't block anything out.

What are your plans for September 11, 2002? I know that my company will be open. They've told us that we can take time off in the morning to attend memorials. I'll probably do that.

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