Maggie -

Misguided Maggie

In response to Maggie Forbes (Former Children's Museum Director) as quoted in the February 21, 2001, ZEISS WIDE SHUT issue of the City Paper: "Building a shrine around what once was will do nothing for this City. That's very misguided."

Here is radical idea for this area. What if Pittsburgh was actually proud of its heritage and "discovered" a way to package History in such a way that people would travel to experience it. What would it take to convince the Mayor and City Council of the concept that Historical Tourism is synergistic and reaches far beyond the buildings and structures to encompass the human experience? Think of the possibilities. (The number one reason people visit Pennsylvania is for its History and its Great Outdoors.) Think of the cash flow. The Pittsburgh region grossed $3.00 Billion in visitor and tourism dollars for 2000. (Call Harrisburg and talk to the Visitor's Bureau if you don't believe me.)

Perhaps Pittsburgh would be wise to protect and preserve the things that make this City unique and set it aside from other cities in the world, rather that striving to create a City that looks, sounds, and smells like any other city in the world. (Makes one wonder why anyone would want to travel to Pittsburgh, especially if it's local government's intent to squander our tax dollars just to create the quintessential Generic City.)

Perhaps the City should turn off its History Erasure Machine before it's too late, and consider changing its slogan from "Pittsburgh: The City with a smile (or perhaps a contemptuous grimace) on its face" to "Pittsburgh: The Globally Unique City that built America."

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