By Logan Dziadzio, Opinions Editor
The catastrophic fire at the Notre Dame Cathedral was a tragedy witnessed throughout the world. As the flames burned through the Cathedral, both the roof and spire collapsed. Over the course of the following few days, approximately $1 billion was pledged to restore the building. These actions were met with backlash from people worldwide, who claimed the money could be put to better use in places with more severe misfortunes. In a world where history and art is so poorly preserved and appreciated, however, maintaining the great monuments of the past is more important than ever.
The construction of Notre Dame began in 1163 and took nearly 200 years to complete. It eventually became a famous Parisian landmark throughout France’s history. The Cathedral is known for its intricate architecture built during the Gothic period. The spire, arguably the most iconic piece of the building, was destroyed by the fire. This paramount structure needs to be restored in order for the building to ever represent the same architectural style and feats of the Gothic Era. The building itself is also home to important artwork of religious nature.
Money being put towards the restoration of a worship site and House of God should not be considered a crime, especially when the work of many artists over the years has been protected by it. The landmark has great historic and religious value that should be preserved. Obviously, the Cathedral is important to many people, or else there would not already be $1 billion pledged to restore what was lost.
This is not the first time the Cathedral has faced destruction requiring great repairs in order to maintain its authenticity. It suffered through some damage from French revolutionists during the late 1700s. When these damages were not immediately repaired, citizens passionate about the Cathedral took it upon themselves to advocate for its restoration, including Victor Hugo with his 1831 novel, The Hunchback of Notre Dame.
For centuries, this Cathedral has served not only as a popular site for tourists to visit and photograph, but also as a place of undeniable religious and historic significance. To think of the Cathedral as not worthy of the money raised for its restoration would be a discourtesy to the years spent constructing it, the history it has witnessed and the value it holds for so many people worldwide.