NEW YORK CITY, NY, September 29, 2020 – Families of victims killed in the September 11th attacks and the nonprofit organization Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth filed an administrative appeal late yesterday condemning the decision of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) to deny the group’s “request for correction” regarding NIST’s 2008 report on the controversial collapse of World Trade Center Building 7, which was famously reported by the BBC 23 minutes before it actually happened. The 47-story office building, not hit by an airplane, fell straight into its footprint roughly seven hours after the Twin Towers came down on September 11, 2001. NIST concluded in its 2008 report that Building 7 was the first tall building ever to collapse primarily due to fire. The request for correction asks NIST to throw out that conclusion on the grounds that it violates NIST’s information quality standards under the Data Quality Act. “The explanations given by NIST for its decision to deny our request are preposterous and totally avoid addressing our arguments,” said Ted Walter, spokesperson for the 9/11 families and AE911Truth. “Our hope now is that NIST’s associate director for laboratory programs, James Olthoff, will reverse this egregious decision and have the report revised.” The appeal submitted late yesterday alleges that NIST’s decision to deny the request is “demonstrably in error and fails to provide a response to most of the relevant data quality arguments contained in the request.” Among other things, the appeal takes aim at NIST’s refusal to study a melted piece of steel from Building 7 on the flimsy grounds that the steel cannot be confirmed as coming from Building 7 — an excuse the appeal calls “brazenly unscientific.” The appeal also targets NIST’s refusal to perform new computer simulations that would include a structural feature NIST admits was excluded from the modeling. AE911Truth argues that including this structural feature would prevent the failure that allegedly initiated the collapse. “They are refusing to conduct new analyses they know they should, and their justifications are beyond absurd,” said Richard Gage, who is an architect and the founder of AE911Truth. The procedure governing requests submitted to NIST says that the associate director’s decision is communicated “usually within 60 calendar days after receipt of the appeal” and will constitute a final decision by the U.S. Department of Commerce, of which NIST is a part. The procedure also dictates that “No individuals who were involved in the initial denial will be involved in the review of or response to the appeal.” “Dr. Olthoff will have the final opportunity to restore NIST’s integrity and deliver some truth to the families who lost loved ones on 9/11,” said Walter. “If he doesn’t, NIST can expect we will take legal action.” The appeal, NIST’s initial decision, and the original request for correction can all be found at AE911Truth.org/nist. COVID-19 may take down an independent news outlet Nobody said running a media site would be easy. We could use some help keeping this site afloat. Colleagues have called me the worst fundraiser ever. My skills are squarely rooted on the journalistic side of running a news outlet. Paying the bills has never been my forte, but we’ve survived. 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Today it is 19 years since the terror attack that killed 3,000 people out of a clear blue New York City sky. It feels strange to say that. It is strange to have colleagues who have but the scant memory of young children of that day. For me and most New Yorkers of a certain age, it is a moment that exists outside of time, that is evoked whenever we see the Twin Towers in an old movie or television show. The tribute of lights each year stops us in our tracks. But this year is different. This year, the greatest city on earth is suffering more than it ever has since that evil act was perpetrated on it. The tragedy of the lockdown is very different from the tragedy of 9/11. The latter was a quick gut punch, a day of horror. We remember seeing footage of hospitals awaiting emergency victims who never arrived because their bones were crushed beneath our city’s tallest buildings. It all happened so fast. The lockdown has instead been a slow-motion six months of asphyxiation. But there is one similarity between the two awful events. They are the only two things that I ever, in my life, have known to slow New York City down. New York is fast. We walk fast, we talk fast, everything is quick, lickety-split done and moved on to the next thing. In the weeks after 9/11, the city was full of slow, shocked faces carried by bodies moving at half their normal speed. I never saw that again until this year. This year, once we ground our usual non-stop grind to a near standstill, the city lost its pace, its quickness. We still don’t have it back. That’s why this year 9/11 has a new meaning. For the first time, we must call on the heroes of that day — and there were only heroes, no victims. Every man and woman who went to work that day, from the CEOs to the janitors, were heroes, avatars of the American dream. Today we need their example, their courage, and their spirit. The firemen and cops who rushed into those buildings, never to return, must be our example as our businesses fail, as our kids go without education, as violent crime rises, and simple human acts like funerals are denied. Our suffering is real. It is a lingering weight and we know not when it will be lifted, but we know that one day soon it will. Like the gleaming tower that now stands on the ground zero of all our tragedy, our lives will get back to normal. We lost 25,000 lives in Gotham to this virus that struck not like planes in a stark moment of explosion, but slowly, like the descent of the death we all must one day face. We mourn them as we did the dead of 19 years ago. But the heroes of 9/11 taught us a lesson, one we have not had occasion to consider until now. They taught us that this city, this miraculous place that we all make together with the souls of the past and hand to those of the future, is bigger than us because of us. Today for the first time, 9/11 is less about sadness and more about inspiration. The brave men and women who sacrificed themselves for us on that awful day did so for a reason — not just because it was their job, not just because they were good people, not just because New York City is a place where we take care of one another. They did so because they believed in us. They believed in a place where anything is possible. They believed in the same dream that so many of our ancestors did a hundred years ago when they arrived on ships passing by Lady Liberty’s torch. 9/11 is a day of sadness. As long as Gotham stands gleaming in the reflection of the Hudson, it always will be. But today it is more. Today it is a reminder that you can knock this city down, but it will get back up again, again, and again. Let us allow today to mark a new beginning. Let the inspiration of our heroes dedicate us to climbing out of the hole we are in with heads high, and as always, let us never forget.
September 11th is usually a solemn day in America, but this year Twitter is shaking things up. Early this morning, the hashtag “#AllBuildingsMatter” started trending, a mocking of the All Lives Matter movement that was created in response to the Black Lives Matter movement. Things quickly heated up on Twitter as users were quick to defend and attack this new hashtag. Why is #AllBuildingsMatter controversial? When we say it we're including 9/11 and the Twin Towers. Everyone matters. pic.twitter.com/SKSJ8PTRLB — Justin AKA Wade Krueger (@WadeKrueger1) September 11, 2020 Usually, Americans come together to mourn the lives lost during the 2001 attack on the Twin Towers and the Pentagon, an event that has come to be considered a great American tragedy. Images of the World Trade Center on fire, videos of the ultimate collapse, and the words “never forget” circulated social media for the past 18 years. Stories of lives lost and of the heroic first responders are always told, memorializing all those impacted. This was one of the few days a year that Americans seemed to come together, to put differences aside and stand a community. Not this year, though. “#AllBuildingsMatter” has been one of the top five trends on Twitter all day. Twitter has a statement at the top of the tag that reads, “As people commemorate the anniversary of of the September 11 attacks, some are linking the tragedy to the numerous deaths of Black men and women at the hands of police, suggesting that the outrage or heartbreak felt in regard to the 9/11 terrorist attacks should, in some way, carry over to tragedies of police brutality. To drive the point home, saying ‘all lives matter’ when another Black person is killed by police feels akin to saying ‘all building matter’ in response to the destruction of the World Trade Center.” People from all sides of the political spectrum are weighing in on the issue. A few House Candidates spoke up against the trend. Douglas Tuman, a Republican candidate from New York, wrote, “I wake up on the 19th anniversary of 9/11 and Twitter’s number two trending hashtag is #AllBuildingsMatter. I have never been more disgusted in my life.” I wake up on the 19th anniversary of 9/11 and Twitter’s number two trending hashtag is #AllBuildingsMatter. I have never been more disgusted in my life. — Douglas Tuman (@ElectTuman) September 11, 2020 Errol Webber, a Republican from California, wrote, “The number two trend in the country is #AllBuildingsMatter. Twitter is allowing this to trend with only 4,400 tweets but suppressed the #CancelNetflix hashtag. We are dealing with evil.” The number two trend in the country is #AllBuildingsMatter. Twitter is allowing this to trend with only 4,400 tweets but suppressed the #CancelNetflix hashtag. We are dealing with evil. pic.twitter.com/l909FYayWd — Errol Webber For Congress (CA-37) (@ErrolWebber) September 11, 2020 Other users tweeted in favor of the hashtag. Talbert Swan, a bishop from Canada, said, “To the entire miracle whip posse being all solemn and somber today and tweeting #NeverForget… remember that the next time you feel like telling Black people to “FORGET ABOUT” or “GET OVER” slavery, lynching, brutalization, dehumanization, and oppression. #AllBuildingsMatter” To the entire miracle whip posse being all solemn and somber today and tweeting #NeverForget… remember that the next time you feel like telling Black people to “FORGET ABOUT” or “GET OVER” slavery, lynching, brutalization, dehumanization, and oppression. #AllBuildingsMatter — Bishop Talbert Swan (@TalbertSwan) September 11, 2020 Some questioned how this hashtag was more offensive than the All Lives Matter trend. Both the terrorist attack and police brutality are tragedies, so some felt that it was a valid response. Someone please explain to me how #AllBuildingsMatter is more offensive than:– All Lives Matter– "Suckers and Losers"– 190,000 lives lost because "I like to play it down." Focus the selective outrage on your OWN silence and hypocrisy. — BrooklynDad_Defiant! (@mmpadellan) September 11, 2020 The people are fuming about #AllBuildingsMatter 19 years after 9/11?….. Now imagine how we feel with our brothers and sisters blood fresh and bodies cold on the streets and yall screaming #Alllivesmatter ???? So, yeah. — jiggaman (@jiggyjayy2) September 11, 2020 A few supporters of “All Buildings Matter” threw frequent reactions to Black Lives Matter back in the face of those distressed about today’s trend. They took a more comedic approach, really making light of the situation. Maybe if the Twin Towers just followed the Planes orders, it wouldn’t be a problem ?#AllBuildingsMatter pic.twitter.com/GhY3wS0Ort — Flight’s Burner (@FlightReacts__) September 11, 2020 Not every supporter of the Black Lives Matter movement was in favor of the “All Buildings Matter” joke. Some felt that the September 11 attacks were too important to regard in this manner. Although I don’t agree with the #AllBuildingsMatter hashtag because 9/11 was terrible but also a moment where America came together, I’ll leave this here. pic.twitter.com/INigXLp3iu — ™️Marcus (@TheMisterMarcus) September 11, 2020 TV personality Swaggy C tweeted a few times about this trend. He said that he supported the Black Lives Matter, but also recognizes September 11 for the tragedy that it was. His biggest issue was the differences in reactions to “#AllLivesMatter” and “#AllBuildingsMatter.” I’m a believer in BLM AND Never Forgot 9/11…. I just hate the hypocrisy in people who say All Lives Matter yet wanna remember 9/11… it makes no sense. BLM & 9/11 ?? RIP to your cousin and I hope you have a good day today remembering him!! — SWAGGY C (@SwaggyCTV) September 11, 2020 For reference, this is a standard “#AllLivesMatter” tweet. Pretty similar points to what people are saying in the “AllBuildingsMatter” tag. Facts are not racist. This is from the super liberal https://t.co/TAZ5qOMMjW. Sadly blacks are far more likely to commit violent crime, which means more interactions with police and more potential to be killed by them. #WhiteLivesMatter #BlackLivesMatter #AllLivesMatter. pic.twitter.com/5dVDSiv4fg — Carmine Sabia (@CarmineSabia) June 3, 2020 As always in America, everything politicized has some strong supporters, protestors, and people who are floating around the middle. The Twitter war rages on, massing over 142,000 tweets so far. Each side is completely convinced they’re right, but are either of them? I guess not every question can have a clear answer, as today’s Twitter debate has shown.