Letters to the Editor

Grieving on Sept. 11

To The Editor:

I read with great disappointment the following excerpt from the editorial in your Sept. 14 – 20 edition (“A date that changes with time”):

“We can’t help but notice that Sept. 11 is becoming more like another day in the calendar. It will never be ‘just’ another day to us and most others who remember it so vividly, but many can now schedule appointments and go about their business without gasping as they do it. It appeared fewer family members attended the ceremony this year. These are all healthy signs that we are learning how to live with the memories of 9/11.”

The implication is that it’s unhealthy for the families to continue attending the memorial service, a suggestion which merely perpetuates our culture’s insistence on riding off into a tidy sunset. Americans prefer to sweep a mess under the rug in a hurry. Comments such as yours only cause the survivors to question further their grieving process — one that is already made so very complicated by the circumstances that brought it about — and that’s such a shame.

Many, many family members have been able to continue with lives that are as full as possible without our siblings, children, spouses and parents. There’s nothing wrong with continuing to want to set aside that day to gather where they were taken from us, to try to process the why and the how of it, to focus on and pay tribute to them at the place where they were most recently in this plane of existence with us, to be with others who understand and do not expect us to edit our emotions, no matter how many years it has been. We celebrate who our loved ones were when they lived, but to deny how they died is to rewrite their reality, a pursuit that would be dangerous for us and disrespectful to them.

While written in kinder, gentler terms than other comments I have read in the last two weeks, your position still echoes of the spreading sentiment of “get over it.” That, sir or madam, is the unhealthy thing to do. That all who have lost loved ones in untimely, tragic ways — and I mean Sept. 11 families and all others — can “get busy living” rather than “get busy dying” the other 364 days of the year are to be commended. So, too, is the courage to face the reality of the one remaining day of the year that irrefutably shadows the rest.

Alyson Low

Sister of Sara Elizabeth Low, flight attendant, American Airlines Flight 11

Tooting Edwards’ horn

To The Editor:

Re “Edwards impresses Downtown crowd with anti-terror plan” (news article, Sept. 14 – 20):

Great article.

My family has been studying all the candidates’ positions and thinks John Edwards is leading on important issues while providing specific plans and solutions — going far beyond the policy-wonk, mumbo-jumbo lingo of other candidates.

His proposals are so viable that the corporate media disses and dismisses him because his proposals of increasing taxes on corporations help the middle class. And of course, the corporate media is promoting the candidates raking in the most corporate moola while delivering vague proposals.

John Edwards will be a great president. Woohoo!


Nancy Terrell

Jacksonville, Fla.

Wal-Mart prices would help

To The Editor:

“Ka-ching goes the school bell” (Back to School column by Angela Benfield, Aug. 31 – Sept. 6) reminded me of other options which have been denied to New Yorkers by our elected officials.  Wal-Mart recently announced that it is reducing the price of over 16,000 back-to-school clothing and supplies for kids.  Parents of school children in New York City should be happy. Last fall, Wal-Mart offered generic drugs for only $4.  Sadly, N.Y.C. residents are unable to get these bargains as Wal-Mart has been unable to open any stores within the five boroughs. N.Y.C. Council Finance Committee chairperson and aspiring 2009 candidate for city comptroller David Weprin will be the Grinch once again for New Yorkers looking for affordable medicines children’s clothing and school supplies.  His past statement that “he would consider allowing Wal-Mart into the city if they played by our rules” is both bad news for New Yorkers and the height of arrogance.  Why should Councilmember Weprin, Council Speaker Christine Quinn and their colleagues set the rules for who can or can’t open a business?

All public opinion polls have consistently shown that New Yorkers would welcome the opportunity to shop at Wal-Mart.  It is time to allow Wal-Mart the chance to compete in the N.Y.C. marketplace.  Let consumers rather than politicians make the decision what to buy and where to shop. 


Larry Penner

Great Neck, New York

Letters policy

Downtown Express welcomes letters to The Editor. They must include the writer’s first and last name, a phone number for confirmation purposes only, and any affiliation that relates directly to the letter’s subject matter. Letters should be less than 300 words. Downtown Express reserves the right to edit letters for space, clarity, civility or libel reasons. Letters should be e-mailed to news@DowntownExpress.com or can be mailed to 145 Sixth Ave., N.Y., N.Y. 10013.