Here are 30 Photos from NYC Fleet Week, #America

Fleet Week (schedule here) returned to New York City this week -- it runs through Tuesday, May 27 -- after last year's federal budget cuts put it on hiatus.

The USS Cole (the same vessel bombed by al Queda in 2000, resulting in the death of 17 sailors), the Oak Hill and the USS McFaul led the way, trailed by a collection of Coast Guard vessels, news helicopters and tourist boats as they moved up the Hudson before arriving at Pier 92 in midtown.

During the trip, the vessels were greeted by a cannon salute as they passed Fort Hamilton and rendered honors at Ground Zero. There are a number of events scheduled through the week, including a simulated Coast Guard rescue, a silent drill team display and and Marine Corps aerial demonstration. Members of the public have also been invited to tour the ships while they're docked here.

Photographer C.S. Muncy was up before dawn on Wednesday and boarded the USS Oak Hill. He brings back these photos for the Voice.

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Gun Show Located Near Newtown Still a Go, Because Of Course

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It's now been four days since the Adam Lanza's killing spree in Newtown, Connecticut, where he killed 27 people, including 20 small children, before committing suicide when he heard first responders to the scene. For the first time ever, it seems, we're talking seriously looking at gun control, and nearly 181,000 have signed a petition on the White House website demanding legislation that limits access to guns, and it looks like, maybe, possibly, the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre might be a seminal moment in American history, and there will be real change. 

But that change ain't here yet. Since Friday, gun sales are up throughout the United States as people are attempting to feel safer, or otherwise  hoard firearms before the president's secret police barge into our homes and take our guns. In Utah today, a sixth-grader is in trouble after taking a handgun to school for protection, at the behest of his parents.

The strangest news, though, comes from Danbury, Connecticut, about a dozen miles from Newtown. Big Al's Gun Shows, a mobile gun bazaar that travels up and down the East Coast, has a show scheduled for January 5-6 in Danbury at the Crown Plaza hotel. To be fair, the show was on the books before the shooting took place. You'd think now Big Al's will call it off, maybe, out of respect, or prudence, or something. Nah. 

We called the company to ask if they were seriously going to go through with it. As soon as we identified ourselves, the man on the line cut us off.

"No comment," he said. "I'm not talking to reporters right now." He promptly hung up.

The New York Times also called Big Al's, who confirmed that the show would still go on. So...that's happening.  

Business Finally Picking Up One Year After 9/11 Memorial Opening

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This morning marked the 11th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks that killed almost 3,000 men, women and children, most of whom died in the city's Financial District at the World Trade Center. Security felt tighter this year as streets were cordoned off and NYPD directed thousands of onlookers around the World Trade Center memorial site, was closed to the public, and officers stopped some walkers randomly to be frisked.

But it felt happier on the scene, too, more hopeful. Even as the names of the lost were read, there were fewer tears. Tourists and mourners didn't direct their cameras down toward what for years after 9/11 was a gaping hole, a mass grave, but up towards One World Trade Center, the half-built skyscraper that already feels like the greatest marvel in the city. The shiny new glass gives way at the top of the tower to matte black tarp, giving 1 WTC the appearance of a still-healing wound. The incomplete scab looks like a closer representation of the American psyche than a completed building probably ever will.

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World Trade Center, 11 Years Later: Here's What's Popping Up

It's been eleven years since a group of murderous monsters destroyed a good chunk of lower Manhattan during the September 11, terrorist attacks, but a lot's been going on to remind their buddies that "we're still here, dickweeds!"

While the enormous Freedom Tower is perhaps the most visible reminder that New Yorkers are basically as badass as it gets, it's just part of the downtown reconstruction that will eventually redefine the city's skyline.

So, today, as we remember what came crashing down 11 years ago, let's also take a look at what's popping up.

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