Monday, September 1, 2008

Sister Cities

Memorial to the Victims of Communism

This month's City Daily Photo Theme is Sister Cities. CDPB suggested asking a friend in a sister city to take a picture for us to post on our blogs. Washington, D.C., has 12 sister cities and I'm sorry to say, I don't know anyone in any of these cities: Accra; Athens; Bangkok; Beijing; Brazzaville; Brussels; Chongqing; Dakar; Paris; Pretoria; Seoul; or Sunderland. Wanting to participate in this theme, I decided I could either take a picture of each country's embassy here in Washington or I could post a picture of Sister Cities International's global headquarters on Pennsylvania Avenue NW. Both sounded boring, so I started thinking a little harder. I finally decided to focus on Beijing and Athens.

In the case of Beijing, I chose as my subject the Victims of Communism Memorial on New Jersey Avenue and G Street NW. Based on a statue called the Goddess of Democracy created by Chinese students during the Tienanmen Square protests of 1989, the purpose of the memorial is to teach "the history of communist tyranny...to future generations." The U.S. currently has no credibility in the world as a leader in solidly upholding democratic ideals and we certainly have little ground to stand on in calling out China and others on their lack of democracy.

Greek philosophy and architecture underpin the halls of our democracy

In the case of Athens, I photographed the U.S. Capitol with its iconic Greek architecture and the seat of our country's government. Our democratic ideals--when they aren't being trampled on by overly zealous politicians on both sides of the aisles--are founded in the philosophies and writings of many early Greek thinkers and a great deal of our architecture with its solid Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian columns, pillars, and capitals are excellent examples of Greek influence in American life.

To visit other photo bloggers participating in this month's theme, click here.

Photo copyright: D.C. Confidential, 08/08

11 comments:

Virginia said...

Great photos and food for thought today DC. !

marley said...

Two intentive and ingenious photos for theme day. I had to be creative too! :)

babooshka said...

Very creative lateral thinking used on this one.

mirage2g said...

Very informative...and creative! The second photo resembles Vienna's parliamnt house too (which btw election is coming and blah blah)...

Happy theme day!

USelaine said...

These are perfect, and suitably thought provoking. Interesting that the sculpture has the socialist type Social Realism look to it.

Maya said...

Nice! I love that greek architecture.

PJ said...

I like this, in particular the first photo, mostly because I've never seen or heard of it before. That dame means business. The whole post is well-written. Maybe the author has special writing skills....

Petrea said...

That's a good post. You went an extra mile to give us two. Beijing apparently has lots of sister cities, as I know Ming posted it in New York and I had it in Pasadena, too. Beijing's reachin' out! (So we hope.)

D.C. Confidential said...

VJ: Thanks!


Marley: I was trying to reach beyond Google Images or finding someone to send me a picture. Of course, if you lived in Sunderlund, UK, I'd have asked you for a pic! :-)


Babooshka: Thanks!


Mirage: Vienna's Parliament Building is beautiful! I love the statue of Athena, I think it is (??), at the base of the building.


USElaine: It's a great statue, isn't it. Supposedly there are numerous replicas all around the world. One day, democracy will prevail in China.


Maya: If you want Greek architecture, this is the city to visit! It's EVERYWHERE. You can't swing a dead cat in this city without hitting a building with Doric, Ionic, or Corinthian columns and capitals!


PJ: On good days, I have magical writing skills. Otherwise, I'm just your average schmoe!


Petrea: Beijing is everywhere these days, it seems, and not just because of the Olympics. Hopefully, some of our sisterliness will rub off on the Eternal City!

Rafa said...

great choice to post both pictures, and very informartive too

J.M. Tewkesbury said...

Rafa: Thanks!