Today the Senate is expected to pass the James Zadroga 9/11 health bill with bipartisan support. Marred by obstacles in the Senate, the bill originally called for 10 years of treatments and compensations to the first responders on 9/11. The Republicans had been blocking the vote for months, claiming that its $7.4 billion cost was too much. But it looks like today the two sides have come together in agreement: five years, costing $4.3 billion.
Perhaps the most painful process of 9/11 remembrance is the construction of One World Trade Center. Despite budget issues for years, the project is slowly progressing. Many were disappointed that the Port Authority changed the building’s name from “Freedom Tower” to “One World Trade Center.” Critics have spoken out about the tower’s base, which is extremely strong for security reasons. The foundation, though secure, in some ways reflects the paranoia of another attack. The new building was originally to be much shorter out of fear for another attack, but it was redesigned to balance height and safety.
The construction of Memorial Plaza is a beautiful way to remember 9/11. Two one-acre memorial pools will house the names of those who perished in the attacks. Hundreds of trees will gracefully watch over the pools. Families will have several ways of finding the names of their loved ones via printed directories or asking staff volunteers. Before Memorial Plaza’s creation, a design competition was formed; over 5,000 entries were submitted from over 60 countries. The Memorial reflects the devastation not only from the US, but from around the world.
At Boston Logan International Airport, the 9/11 memorial honors the crews and passengers of AA Flight 11 and UA Flight 175. The memorial site, stretching two and a half acres, houses a glass box with the names of all passengers and flight crews on two glass panels. Surrounding the glass creation are trees that will turn to a colorful yellow in the fall. The Memorial took into account the ideas of the families who lost their loved ones. It is open 24 hours a day for all to reflect and remember.
The Zadroga bill is a nod to those who risked their lives to assist their fellow citizens in danger. While tens of thousands were running away from smoke and fire, these brave men and women were racing into it. Such bravery should be honored with the greatest respect possible.
Mcauliff, Michael. December 22, 2010. “Senators reach deal to approve James Zadroga 9/11 health bill”. Retrieved December 22, 2010 from NY Daily News: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/2010/12/22/2010-12-22_senators_reach_deal_to_approve_james_zadroga_911_health_bill.html?r=news
December 22, 2010. “Memorial Plaza”. Retrieved December 22, 2010 from National 911 Memorial: http://www.national911memorial.org/site/PageServer?pagename=new_memorial_plaza
December 22, 2010. “The Boston Logan International Airport 9/11 Memorial”. Retrieved December 22, 2010 from Massport: http://www.massport.com/logan-airport/inside-airport/911%20Memorial/911Memorial.aspx