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February 2002

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Letter from U.S.A.

 

Not in our son's name

 

By Phyllis and Orlando Rodriguez

 

Phyllis and Orlando Rodriguez's son Greg was one of the victims at the World Trade Centre. They sent this and a letter addressed to President Bush to the New York Times. They may be the only ones to have written this but the views and thoughts reflect those of others. 

 

With the possibility of other countries becoming the next targets in the "War on Terrorism", the views expressed are still relevant.

 

"It is not the time to act like bullies. We urge you to think about how our government can develop peaceful, rational solutions to terrorism, solutions that do not sink us to the inhuman level of terrorists."

 
New York, September 15, 8:35 pm

Our son Greg is among the many missing from the World Trade Centre attack. Since we first heard the news, we have shared moments of grief, comfort, hope, despair, fond memories with his wife, the two families, our friends and neighbors, his loving colleagues at Cantor Fitzgerald/ESpeed, and all the grieving families that daily meet at the Pierre Hotel.

We see our hurt and anger reflected among everybody we meet. We cannot pay attention to the daily flow of news about this disaster. But we read enough of the news to sense that our government is heading in the direction of violent revenge, with the prospect of sons, daughters, parents, friends in distant lands dying, suffering, and nursing further grievances against us. It is not the way to go. It will not avenge our son's death. Not in our son's name.

Our son died a victim of an inhuman ideology. Our actions should not serve the same purpose. Let us grieve. Let us reflect and pray. Let us think about a rational response that brings real peace and justice to our world. But let us not as a nation add to the inhumanity of our times.

Letter to the White House

Dear President Bush:

Our son is one of the victims of Tuesday's attack on the World Trade Centre. We read about your response in the last few days and about the resolutions from both Houses, giving you undefined power to respond to the terror attacks.

Your response to this attack does not make us feel better about our son's death. It makes us feel worse. It makes us feel that our government is using our son's memory as a justification to cause suffering for other sons and parents in other lands.

It is not the first time that a person in your position has been given unlimited power and came to regret it. This is not the time for empty gestures to make us feel better. It is not the time to act like bullies. We urge you to think about how our government can develop peaceful, rational solutions to terrorism, solutions that do not sink us to the inhuman level of terrorists.

Sincerely,

Phyllis and Orlando Rodriguez
 

 

This was first published in September 19, 2001 edition of