Waynedale Political Commentaries


(L-R) Indiana native Becky Fleisher, Ari Fleisher, former Press Secretary to “W”, and Indiana Republican State Senator Thomas J. Wyss discuss issues during the Republican Convention in the “Big Apple”.
(L-R) Indiana native Becky Fleisher, Ari Fleisher, former Press Secretary to “W”, and Indiana Republican State Senator Thomas J. Wyss discuss issues during the Republican Convention in the “Big Apple”.
New York Visited


Late summer is a beautiful time to be in the “Big Apple”. This year was even more special since I was able to attend my first Republican National Convention in the “city that never sleeps”.

For those who have never been there, the size of the community, the size of the buildings, the sights in the day, and the sights in the night are almost unexplainable. New Yorkers love their city…and now so do I.

I was all pumped up to be traveling to New York to be able to participate in the re-nomination of our President. I had no apprehension as to terrorists, no trepidations of cabbies, nor any fear of the “tough” New Yorkers as we so often hear about. No, I was going to have fun and by gosh, nothing was going to stop me!

At my first morning session on Monday, I started meeting many of New York’s “finest”. Those men and women in blue who so bravely risk their lives and safe being to protect and serve their citizenry. This week they were there to keep us safe too. I made many friends starting that morning with these officers and will undoubtedly continue to correspond with some.

The daily events went smoothly, the speeches were interesting, and anticipation was building in me to hear the Vice-President address our convention on Wednesday evening. That afternoon was available for me to finally make my way to “Ground-Zero”, a mere block and a half from my hotel. Since 9/11, I had wanted to be able to stand at the site which I consider to now have the same significance to my country as the U.S.S. Arizona from WW II in Pearl Harbor.

It is hard to describe just exactly what feelings I experienced, looking at a 17-acre “hole in the ground” where Twin Towers once magically reached into the heavens. I was amazed to believe that this was the same place that I had watched in horror on TV as the buildings collapsed first one, and then another,…taking thousands of innocent lives – and 19 terrorists whose souls will burn in hell for their actions against innocent Americans and other nationals!

I walked completely around the acreage and came to the memorial location for the family members of the victims. It was locked to the general public with a large chain and padlock. In addition, it had security personnel to protect it. I got into a conversation with the police officer who was there, and seeing my credentials, he opened up the gate for me to enter. I can only describe my walking up to the memorial as if what I would feel if I were walking up to the altar in my church. After saying a few prayers for those who perished, I stood back. I then realized why so many of the families desire that the site remain a monument to the perished rather than new construction of buildings… this is truly hallowed ground.

That evening when I arrived at Madison Square Gardens for the convention, I met two detectives that I conversed with on my multiple trips to the facility. They called me inside one of the stairwells. There the one detective removed his badge and its connecting holder with multiple bars signifying various honors received. He took off the WTC metal bar and handed it to me. This was received for his work at the carnage of the World Trade Center following that fateful warm sunny morning only three years past. I said I could not accept it. They both told me they wanted to share it with me. Needless to say, I had few words to express my gratitude to them…it was hard to speak!

At the close of the convention as I was leaving the arena, I saw many of the officers who I had met over the week, including Secret Service, State Police, Port Transit Authority Police, and of course, New York City Public Safety Officers. We wished each other good luck and pleasantries and shook hands. When I approached the two detectives I mentioned earlier, they took no handshakes, but rather gave me a bear hug and said, “We’ll see each other again, Brother”!

I have been to New York before this convention, but never have I left New York with a better love for the city, her citizens, and her hospitality. And, of course I will never forget her Law Enforcement and Fire Fighters, especially “….those who were running up the stairs to rescue others…” on that horrific September 11, 2001. That certainly is another day that “…will live in Infamy!”

The Waynedale News Staff
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