I'm so mixed on this, cause how do you measure people who put themselves in harms way against the innocent. And just because you are the innocent, how is that an entitlement to reparations? I know that the biggest tragedy likely hasn't happened yet, and that is the asbestosis of the countless first responders and people of NYC who breathed in that air for days and days. Now and for 20 years we will see unmeasurable cancer rates in the people near the towers.
Back to the topic. I work for the Air Force now, after 21 years working for the Navy. I see young kids hours from shipping out every week and I'm honored to meet them and proud of everyone of them.
I flash back to a family Navy family when I was 17 (1975) and I befriended the two nephews who lived with the aunt who was only about 24 herself. Her husband was deployed somewhere, and she had no money to buy food with or anything else. Our politicians should be ashamed to keep the families of the Armed Forces in food-stamps especially in non-draft times.
My mom cleaned out our freezer and gave everything she could, asked her friends and they helped and my parents even paid her $5 an hour to teach me to drive (I could drive, but she didn't just want to give money to her, as sad as it was, she was still proud.
Today, it isn't much different - the military is still under-paid and kept at incomes Welfare Recipients would walk the streets in protest over.
Meanwhile, as tragic an event as 9-11 was, how is it the fault of NYC or Federal Gov.? Can anyone honestly say that it was avoidable? Sure, threats to the towers were known, but anticipating the simplicity of the events leading to the deaths that day are so out of the box, no one could have anticipated it.
Same goes Oklahoma City bombing, where the major difference was McVey and Reynolds did what American's would do - set a bomb and get out of there. We don't understand the meaning of blowing ourselves up, a definite disadvantage in the last 8 years of war.
I'm sorry to be passive in my thinking of the families of 9-11, their loved ones were at the wrong place at the wrong time and nothing more. The fire-fighters and police chose to put their lives at risk, as they do everyday and funds had to be set up to raise money for their survivors. Of course, I don't know if the 9-11 victims reparations would cover them since they "chose" to go in - if they aren't covered, and reparations come - that is shameful.
In any litigation in this country, we have "worth" caps on how monetary amounts are calculated - basically, what could that person earn in their life if it hadn't been cut short. Being Wall Street, I'm sure many of these people COULD have earned millions in their life-time, and I assume the huge swing in estimates of payout is hugely based on that. But as my wife said "The only ones who will make out are the lawyers in the end."
It is sad, but whether we spent 8 years in Iraq for the wrong cause and could have spent that money in Afghanistan where it would have been better served, this country has spent TRILLIONS in reparations already in the lives of everyone who has died or been harmed mentally or physically in these wars and the back breaking cost to every man, woman and child in our country who has had to suffer the economic consequences of the last decade.
Thank God that this didn't happen 3 hours later, in the Trade Centers the estimates would have been 50 thousand people or more, most tourists making their way slowly to the top. Every life lost was senseless and tragic, but how is paying out another billion or more going to make any of this right?!