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Reported by Krystle Crossman
The 9/11 memorial site in New York City was built to reflect on those who died, those who sprang into action to help others, and the survivors. It is now currently one of the most popular tourist attractions in the city. People go to the memorial to look into the reflecting pools where the tower once stood. They contemplate how fragile life is and how it can be over in a second. Tourists then visit the museum that explains all of the horrible events of September 11th, 2001. After they leave the museum, they are enticed to enter the gift shop. Yes, a place to remember lives lost has a gift shop waiting at the end…
The gift shop is composed of items such as t-shirts, mugs, magnets, key chains, and even stuffed animals for the kids. Out of the 140 different items that are carried in the store, there are only almost 8 percent that were actually made in the United States. The gift shop and museum have not yet been open to the public but have allowed family members of those who died on 9/11 to tour the facility. The feedback that they have gotten from the family members has been anything but positive. They feel that the site is just using the memory of their dead loved ones to earn a profit. They also feel that it is disrespectful to be selling merchandise that is a souvenir of one of the worst days in not only their lives, but in the country’s history.
The merchandise profit is said to fund the memorial and its upkeep. Many are finding that the sale of these items is tasteless due to the fact that the museum and gift shop were built on top of a tomb that contains the remains of 8,000 people who died in the towers.