The editorial "Dignified mourning for 9/11" [Sept. 9] ended with, "That's all that's needed to remind us of what we can't forget." Oh, if only that were true!

In 50 years or less, Ground Zero will just be another tourist attraction. Why do I write this? Recently, I was fortunate to visit the USS Arizona at Pearl Harbor. This is a hallowed and sacred place of another era.

Visitors were laughing, joking and just having a grand old time while the men and women who defended our country lay beneath their feet. The park ranger clapped his hands to get everyone's attention to explain that the memorial should be treated with reverence and respect. There were snickers and comments.

Ground Zero will be another chapter of U.S. history passing into oblivion.

David Smith, Hicksville
 

Reading that the presidential candidates were setting aside negative campaigning on Sept. 11, I was struck by how fitting it is for our leaders to commemorate the occasion in this way.

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It seems appropriate on this anniversary of shared loss to set aside partisan politics and negativity and to focus on the many needs and goals we have in common. It my hope that we could expand on this notion and in some way make it part of our annual observance. If there is one lesson to be taken from the sacrifice of the innocents, and the valiant efforts of the responders, it is that we are all in this together.

Andrew Barkus, Centereach