After I let it sink in for a minute and listened to the news people talk, my eyes welled up with tears. But the thing is I was not sure why I was crying. When I think of the thousands of tears I cried on 9/11 and off and on (mostly on) for weeks after, the few tears that rolled down my cheek seemed to pale in comparison.
I am pro life. In pretty much every imaginable way. I know plenty of people who are pro-life when it comes to abortion, but they support capital punishment. I don't fault people for that view. In fact, it seems less contradictory than the views of people who support women's right to choose yet are against capital punishment. But this post is not to argue or even quibble about that. And if you know me at all, then you should realize I really, truly try to respect and even understand the opinions of others.
No, as I said on Facebook yesterday, the "victory" (which I put in quotes on FB as well) feels hollow. That is the thing about capital punishment (and I am not sure if the killing of Osama was technically considered capital punishment)--it can never bring back the person or people whom the murderer killed. The only "good" thing is that it's a 100 percent deterrent to committing another heinous act.
If Osama acted alone and had no followers, I imagine I would feel better. I could say that the country and the world are truly safer places. But the thing is he did not act alone. There are too many, to put it simply, bad people in this world. Too many people who hate the U.S. People who think nothing of giving up their lives if it means they kill others whom they disagree with, find fault with, etc., in the process. Just because Osama is dead does not mean the world is all sunshine and lollipops now. In fact, I am trying not to think about the retaliation that may be upon us. Excuse me while I rock myself back and forth or go bury my head in the sand.
I guess I don't know what to think or how to feel. But I will leave you with this quote that several friends posted on Facebook yesterday. Make no mistake: I am quite certain Osama was evil and guilty of unspeakable crimes, including 9/11 (I am talking to you, Rashard!). And I guess someone has to judge him and put a stop to him. But I just can't get down with celebrating the death of another.
I will 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.
[Note that the first sentence above was apparently the posting of Jessica Dovey, a 24-year old Penn State graduate(!). The sentences that follow, in quotes, are attributed to MLK Jr. I think both sum up my feelings nicely.]