The boyfriend and I were happily watching crap TV all weekend. I say
“crap” because a decent chunk of it was “Bridezillas”. No, really. I
confess – I’m a sucker for watching train wrecks like that.
Especially with more weddings coming up among my friends and family in
the next couple years.
However. When you watch lowest common denominator TV, you get lowest
common denominator commercials. Like the one for the 9/11 collectible
I almost threw up. Paul and I were both stunned. We couldn’t believe
that anyone would start selling collectible coins for one of
the greatest tragedies of our time. It doesn’t commemorate the loss
in any sort of respectful way, but turns it into a Home Shopping
Network commercial. They claim a portion of proceeds will go to 9/11
related charities – but still, who makes the majority of the proceeds?
Who came up with this horrible idea to exploit one of the most
terrible days in American history, and demean it to the level of a
So I suppose the half-life now, from tragedy to nostalgia, is five
years. Five years is all we need to turn horror and suffering and
loss into a memory without any pain, a memory that is transformed into
a sterile image. Four years from now, will there be Katrina tours of
New Orleans? Will there be collectible figurines showing the citizens
of New Orleans clinging to rooftops?
I can’t believe that Americans haven’t risen up against the WTC 9/11
commemorative coin. I can’t believe that we are so inured against the
for-profit use of emotions that we let these things slide. I can’t
believe that the survivors and families haven’t sued these people for cheapening their loss. I
can’t believe that so much tragedy comes down to this, five short
Then again, 9/11 was turned into a marketing campaign from the get-go.
Immediately after the planes hit, the tragedy was used for purchase
by the Bush government, to wedge fear into the hearts of the people.
9/11 has been turned into a slogan, a catchphrase, a campaign to make
the early twenty-first century into 1984. Now that I think about it
– that’s a bigger abuse of the horrors of five years ago than even the
cheapening for a commemorative coin’s sake.
So we have six days left, and then we have the five year anniversary,
and I don’t know what’s wrong with any of this anymore, how we have
become so desensitized to the abuse of the event.
Maybe I’m just overreacting though. What do you all think? Is it OK
to make 9/11 into a commemorative coin?