Our alarm is a gentle voice of NPR set to go off at 6:30 every morning. Today, this is the time at which we learned Osama Bin Laden had been killed.
Being in the midst of more important tasks, I didn’t listen long to the reporting. (I had a dishwasher to empty and then getting ready for a run) Thus it wasn’t until later that I heard of all the excitement – people chanting “U S A” at a baseball game as the announcement scrolled, for instance. There were, in fact, many reports of partying in response to the news.
I was saddened at the news; I am even more saddened at the partying.
I get that bin Laden was the leader of Al Quaeda, which was responsible for the 9/11 attacks, as well as many other terrorist actions, but I don’t want to be excited about anyone’s death.
Not even bin Laden’s.
Another reason I’m not really in the partying mood over bin Laden’s apparent demise is that I doubt this means an end to terrorism, much less actual peace. Violence as repayment for violence rarely brings an end to violence.
And so it continues. We remember today the impromptu parties that broke out in some places around the globe immediately following 9/11. How many of us, as we remember those parties today, are thinking, “well, look who’s partying now!”? Do we really think this means it is over?
May we consider what kinds of things might be done to move us closer to actual peace.