The Corner

At Ground Zero, New Yorkers Remember

Ground Zero –  The two bagpipers called for silence. Around them, the rowdy crowd lowered their voices and ceased their shouts. The two men began to play, and a few notes later, people began to sing. Standing between the spires of St. Paul’s Chapel and the cranes being used to construct the memorial on the World Trade Center site, a group belted out Amazing Grace.

It was nearing 3 a.m., but the area remained packed, crammed with a cheering, chanting, and singing crowd. Waving dozens of flags, those present alternately remembered those who had died on 9/11 and rejoiced that Osama bin Laden was dead.

Patriotism reigned: U.S.A., U.S.A.! was by far the most popular chant. At times, the crowd recited the Pledge of Allegiance. They sang God Bless America and the Star Spangled Banner. Occasionally, the chants were angry: F*** Osama.  There were defiant signs: “Obama 1, Osama 0” and “Ding Done Bin Laden’s Dead.” There were celebratory chants: 1, 2, 3, 4, we love the Marine Corps! and Yes, we can, yes, we can; yes, we did! There was the occasional political moment, such as a cheer for four more years for President Obama.

And, of course, there were New York moments. The crowd chanted NYPD, NYPD, sang along to Jay-Z and Alicia Key’s Empire State of Mind, and shouted NYC, NYC.

Diane Massaroli, whose husband Michael died at the World Trade Center on 9/11, told me that she was feeling “a mix of emotions.”

“Happy. Relieved. Peaceful,” she says. “But it’s definitely a thing to celebrate.”

Katrina Trinko — Katrina Trinko is a political reporter for National Review. Trinko is also a member of USA TODAY’S Board of Contributors, and her work has been published in various media outlets ...

Most Popular


Courage: The Greatest of Virtues

EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is Jonah Goldberg’s weekly “news”letter, the G-File. Subscribe here to get the G-File delivered to your inbox on Fridays. Dear Reader (Or Listener), As the reporter assigned the job of writing the article about all of Sidney Blumenthal’s friends and supporters told his ... Read More

My American Dream

This morning, at 8 a.m., I did something I’ve wanted to do for as long as I can remember: I became an American. I first applied for a visa in early 2011, and since then I have slowly worked my way through the system — first as a visa-holder, then as a permanent resident (green card), and, finally, as a ... Read More

The Gun-Control Debate Could Break America

Last night, the nation witnessed what looked a lot like an extended version of the famous “two minutes hate” from George Orwell’s novel 1984. During a CNN town hall on gun control, a furious crowd of Americans jeered at two conservatives, Marco Rubio and Dana Loesch, who stood in defense of the Second ... Read More