The American public is giving terrorists the edge. While post-Sept. 11 terrorist incidents have not matched the original impact of two planes on the World Trade Center, the threat of giving the terrorists greater satisfaction is always looming.
The controversy about rebuilding the World Trade Center is a complex one. Do we rebuild in spite of the terrorists, or do we wait to honor those fallen?
Bill Maher, of Politically Incorrect fame, believes that any form of sadness is giving terrorists the edge. He said that David Letterman and Jon Stewart “gave terrorists the satisfaction of crying like women.” He was referring to their first shows following Sept. 11.
Maher has a valid point, although one may have a difficult time envisioning terrorists in caves watching the tube. Granted, not all terrorists are in the deserts of Afghanistan, but it is enjoyable to make fun of our enemy.
Maher also addressed the often used term “coward” when speaking of the terrorists. This trend began in President Bush’s address during the evening of Sept. 11.
“We have been the cowards, lobbing cruise missiles from 2,000 miles away,” said Maher. “Staying in the airplane when it hits the building, say what you want about it, it’s not cowardly.”
It is undeniable, cowardly or not, that the terrorists were victorious in their attacks. Their victory will be greater if America allows it.
Maher said again speaking about Stewart and Letterman, “It was a terrible display. It’s maudlin. It’s sentimental. It’s womanish. Men shouldn’t cry- certainly not publicly- in a time of war. You should put on your brave face and suck it up. You don’t wallow.”
While his statements reek of sexism (“womanish,” “men shouldn’t cry”), his point is this: the terrible deeds are done, let us not give the bastards any more satisfaction. This leads to an important question: as our hearts slowly rebuild, when can we rebuild the World Trade Center?
Families of World Trade Center victims are requesting that the rebuilding be slowed down. Developers have proposed to begin rebuilding seven World Trade Centers as early as June.
It is important to show the terrorists that we remain undaunted by rebuilding, but there are the remains of thousands of people still at Ground Zero. June is too soon for the victims’ families.
The New York City Council has a difficult decision on its hands. The families’ concerns should be of the utmost importance, and when their demands are met, rebuilding should begin.