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Can you believe we finally got Bin Laden? And he was living in a "mansion" no less? Crazy.

I see where he was shot in the head during a firefight. I can't say I'm real sorry about that. I was a bit put off, though, by people singing the National Anthem and "God Bless America."

Of course, that criticism isn't directed at families of the victims, whose feelings in the aftermath of bin Laden's death are due the utmost respect, regardless of how they choose to express them. But my reaction to the news was largely one of sadness because it made me recall the terror of watching the planes hit the buildings and the horrifying images of people jumping from the burning towers.

This news was the closing of the book (I hope) of a tragic chapter in our history. It was no time for knee-jerk jingoism or flag-waving or chanting "U.S.A." Instead, it was a time to once more recall the thousands of our brothers and sisters whom we lost because of Osama. As for him, he simply got what was coming to him. A cause for satisfaction? Certainly. A cause for celebration? Certainly not.

A minority opinion? Probably.

I think there was a lot of spontaneity to the celebrations in D.C. and NYC last night (especially the college students) and I will not be disappointed one bit if this helps revive a spirit of patriotism and union in our nation, especially with our young people. The U.S.A. chants might have been a bit over the top, but we are at war and this was a major victory in that battle worthy of celebration.

With friends like Pakistan, who needs enemies?


Oh, I agree we need something to make us feel better about ourselves as a nation; there’s an awful lot of negativity that pervades both politics and popular discourse. True political leadership is non-existent on both sides of the aisle, or our collective self-image would be a lot higher. And both parties are pretty much the same. Lincoln’s idea of government “of the people, by the people and for the people” is valid only as far as “of the people” is concerned anymore.

As for your observation about celebrating a victory in a big battle, I respect your position. I’ve said my piece, so it’s only fair you get you have your say without my responding, “Yeah, but ...”

I trust the governments of Pakistan and Afghanistan about as far as I can throw your house. I’m afraid that sometime during our lifetimes (regardless of how many millions we try to buy those governments with), nuclear weapons from Pakistan will fall into the wrong hands. God help us if this happens.

Comments

( 8 comments — Leave a comment )
sahlah
May. 3rd, 2011 02:51 am (UTC)
I mourn the loss of thousands of precious lives, but I will not rejoice in the death of one, not even an enemy. Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that”
~ Martin Luther King, Jr.
patrick_vecchio
May. 3rd, 2011 03:07 am (UTC)
The man had a way with words, didn't he?
nodressrehersal
May. 3rd, 2011 12:51 pm (UTC)
Your dialogue is the mirror image of many that are taking place on facebook and pretty much anywhere dialog can be exchanged.

Interesting times.

Jeff Simon and Donn Esmonde both had columns in the Bflo News today, Dan Barry in the NYTimes, and the celebrations were part of their pieces.
patrick_vecchio
May. 3rd, 2011 08:26 pm (UTC)
I'll have to catch Esmonde's take on it. I've already read Barry's, and these days for me, Jeff Simon works better as a concept.
vivitalia
May. 3rd, 2011 07:09 pm (UTC)
I completely agree, pjv. Call me a peacenik, but I don't celebrate killing. Of anyone. Period. I don't deny that I'm glad he can't continue inciting hatred and terror all over the world, against his own people as well as others. But I'm not going to party in the streets because he got shot in the head, nor do I think that's even remotely appropriate. There, now I've said mine.
patrick_vecchio
May. 3rd, 2011 08:27 pm (UTC)
Sometimes you've got no choice but to speak out. This was one of those times.
cougarfang
May. 3rd, 2011 11:36 pm (UTC)
I'm amused by the fact that on Facebook, I saw what probably would've been several weeks worth of digestion and reaction compressed down into hours (basically overnight).

To summarize:
'At first all the "hooray, we got him!" posts were kind of annoying, but then the "oh, we are just like them if we celebrate blah blah" high-horse messages got annoying.'

'And then the "how dare you be so high and mighty" posts got annoying too.'

'Unpopular opinion: It is okay for Americans to be dancing in the street.'

Hooray, the future is really, really fast!
patrick_vecchio
May. 3rd, 2011 11:53 pm (UTC)
I think the future is overrated.
( 8 comments — Leave a comment )

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