Base Jumping off the Freedom Tower

On September 30th of last year three men jumped from One World Trade Center,(a building that tops out at a whopping 1,776 feet tall) in a BASE jumping stunt while a fourth man watched from the ground. These men have been charged with felony burglary, misdemeanor reckless endangerment, and misdemeanor jumping from a structure; they were able to get in and successfully jump off the structure while only barely being caught on security cameras because one of the jumpers, James Brady, used to work there as an ironworker and so knew the areas security flaws. It has taken the police almost six months to catch these men and now that they have news stations are keeping pretty quiet about one of the most symbolically twisted aspects of this case, the fact that these men willing jumped for pleasure from the site that many others jumped from out of desperation on 9/11 over twelve years ago. freedom

Personally, I think the crime itself is more important than the symbolic ramifications involved in the site at which it took place, but it is confusing that many news stations are staying quiet about this. ABC and CNN give the connection a quick comment on their websites, but groups like Time and Fox News have kept surprisingly hush about that part of the story. Fox’s failure to mention this connection is especially disconcerting considering that back in 2011 it devoted several articles and air time to the subject of a Muslim community center being built near the World Trade Center, calling it a mosque even though Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, the founder of the Cordoba Inititiative the organization that proposed the center, made it very clear that this was not a mosque, but rather a community center that would allow people of all faiths to enter it. So when three men jump off the actual site of the attack it is baffling that Fox, along with other news sources have remained silent is baffling. If these men were Muslim or Arabic (which some of these news sites seem to believe is the same thing) then the press would be having a field day, but since it was a bunch of white men no one seems to care much. Maybe Fox only cares to bring up 9/11 when it serves some Islamophobic purpose, and not when it has anything to do with the innocent people who died that day.

This has become an incredibly infuriating situation, both because of the reckless actions of a few young men that could have had a very dangerous outcome, and through the hypocrisy of the news stations that covered it. Let’s hope that officials from the World Trade Center will at least get these men’s help in fixing their security flaws so that something like this won’t happen again.

by MEGAN A. ZIMLICH / staff writer



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