Geraldo Rivera recently said he thinks New York City’s decision to cancel the annual 9/11 light installation is more about the “symbolism” of “sticking it to” President Donald Trump than due to safety concerns over the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, Fox News reported on Friday.
Typically, two beams of light would be set up in lower Manhattan to remember where the Twin Towers once stood. It was canceled primarily due to fears the virus could affect the workers who would have to put the display together in the days before the anniversary date.
The 9/11 Museum & Memorial also decided it would not hold a reading of the victims’ names at the Ground Zero ceremony.
Rivera argued that these choices were made to try and make life seem as “grim” as possible and ensure Trump would be saddled “with the responsibility for it.”
“It’s the harshest kind of partisan politics that you could possibly imagine.”
The Fox News correspondent-at-large also said that abandoning “that noble project for 9/11” was “kind of a surrender” of the values and ideals that are supposed to make New York City so impressive.
He referred to the museum’s decision to cancel the memorial display as the “saddest story.”
Not only was Rivera disheartened by the choice, but he compared the cancelation to the “Biden-Harris commandment” that asks everyone to wear masks while out in public, regardless of where they live.
“This is part and parcel of the urban America surrender that I think is part politics and I think the politics part of it stinks.”
He continued, saying Americans need to “clear the air” and “let science talk.”
Rivera asked for people to stop doing “these flamboyant gestures that are truly designed to stick it to the president of the United States.”
According to the New York Post, instead of the usual annual 9/11 traditions, the city is instead planning to light up various building “spires” and “facades” in blue.
Additionally, the nonprofit Tunnel Towers Foundation will host their own small ceremony in Lower Manhattan that will allow family members of the fallen to read out the names of those who died.
On social media, many people were upset that the regular 9/11 tribute would not be present this year and felt it did not make much sense since other events, like the MTV Video Music Awards, were still proceeding as planned, albeit outdoors. Some even said they were motivated to go out and protest the decision.