I think the headline of this article is a bit misplaced. Calling the 9/11 Memorial & Museum “New York’s hottest tourist attraction” marginalizes it greatly. Having been to the 9/11 Memorial itself (and as a native New Yorker and person who was in New York on 9/11), I think it is a poignant and dignified product of what was (as I am sure the writer is aware) a tumultuous, bureaucracy-ridden and value engineered 13+ year rebuilding process of the WTC site. I recently viewed this feature on the NY Times website (http://goo.gl/5FT6Mg) which I think gives a good idea of what the 9/11 Museum is really like inside. To me, it appears to be simultaneously raw, refined, informative and reverent. Nothing I see in that feature says “hot tourist attraction.” I virtually jumped for joy last week when I heard that the 9/11 Memorial was now freely open to the public, meaning no more fences closing it in, no more ticket required to walk up to it, etc. I consider this part of the healing process (and I believe the designer of the memorial said something similar about wanting the large pools to be a place people feel comfortable just walking through). New York and the rest of the US can not heal from 9/11 if we hold the WTC site with kid gloves. I hardly endorse what has happened there in the years since 9/11, as the rebuilding process has been nothing short of a disgrace (not to mention that the buildings currently on the site leave much to be desired design-wise), but there would be no progress if we just left a big open space there either. As for being “disgusted” by tourists posing for photos at the 9/11 Memorial, why would they not? If you are from Brazil or China, 9/11 doesn’t mean as much to you and it’s that simple. I’m sorry if that sounds harsh, but that’s how I see it. Behaving in a reverent manner at a place like the 9/11 Memorial should come naturally to most people, but if it doesn’t, it’s not on part of the people who administer the site (or museum). Having a gift shop is a tacky move, but again, I think the designers of the Memorial and Museum hope that one day this will be a site where we can come to reflect on that horrible day, to continue healing, and to educate future generations. Children born today will view 9/11 through a much different lens than those who were there that day (it’s the same for Pearl Harbor, etc.). Putting things in perspective may remove some of the bitterness the writer of this article seems to express.