Monday, May 02, 2011

the morning after

“I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.” MLK, Jr.

I find myself sad today, more than anything else. Sad that it took us 9+ years to achieve this goal. Sad that it was still a goal after 9+ years. Sad that thousands of others died in the quest for this one man to no longer live. And sad knowing that this does not mean the end, but only that things will change.

I am sure there is a 'break-glass-in-case-of-emergency' plan somewhere among Osama's followers, and I am frightened thinking about what grief that will cause. I am worried for my sister who is teaching overseas, and for my friends who plan to do the same next year. I am worried for our troops who are fighting in multiple locales... and while I hope this news brings them home, I am doubtful. My thoughts linger on people in southeastern America-- and Japan and Haiti and all the other sites of recent devistation-- who have lost everything of substance and so many friends and family that it hurts to consider what they are enduring. And I wonder: how does the death of one man-- a man filled with hate, for sure-- make any of their tragedy any better?

I believe in the power of love and the goodness of humanity and the-sun-will-come-out-tomorrow way of thinking. The sun did come out today, as it did here almost 10 years ago when bin Laden's unthinkable plan went into action. I wish this death could bring back those lost in New York City and Washington, DC and that field in Pennsylvania... but they are still gone, and we are forever changed by that day. We are probably forever changed by today, too. I hope that this is the end of it, that there are no repercussions, and that our troops can come home and we can all coexist. I'm just hoping for peace...

I realize I am in the minority that I am not rejoicing in his death. While I am thankful that he is no longer here causing problems for others, I am not sure we will be free of his legacy of hatred for some time. I am also sorry that another human being was charged with ending his life: I cannot imagine the toll that takes on someone's soul. It is why I don't believe in the death penalty: I have no doubt that there are people and situations that demand the final punishment, but I do not think it right to ask another human to fulfill that role. And so today I find myself sad more than anything else.

1 comment:

Wendy said...

I'm with you in the minority camp, and I simply can not rejoice, what seems like not much of a victory - especially in light of all of the other stuff that's happening in our world.

I think we really have our priorities badly skewed.