My thoughts on the death of Osama Bin Laden:
1. He’s now a martyr. Congratulations, America. You took down one monster and created another thousand. I’ve studied Islam and I learned to understand who and what the Mujaheddin are. One man is not the puppeteer, I promise. That’s like saying Obama is our puppeteer just because he’s our “leader.” When a guy takes ten years to be found and killed after thousands of troops are deployed to undertake the task, who will be intimidated by that? Ten years of preparations for this inevitable day will probably yield some interesting reactions on the part of al-Qaeda too. As a friend of mine quoted, “An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind.” -Gandhi. When we preach that we live in a civilized society, we should really consider the “civilized” actions we take. Or is this just another “do as I say, not as I do?”
2. Everyone in NY absolutely has to be talking about the death of this guy? News cameras flood the area between the WTC site & the “mosque”? For what? Reactions? I can tell you the reaction of just about everyone: “Woo hoo! We did it! We’re so fucking awesome!” I have no idea how his death is supposed to end jihad (the misinterpreted kind, not the “typical” Islamic kind). Is it because in our history if we killed a leader, the rest of the army would go, “oh well, we’ve got nothing now. Let’s just go home”? Because that notion is ridiculous and I’m surprised at how many people are so happy they created more turmoil.
3. But they’re not happy because they created havoc. They’re happy because they killed someone responsible for the death of Americans. I understand that a lot of peoples’ reactions come from having loved ones who fought/died in the war (as well as having fought in the war themselves) in addition to losing people from the WTC attacks. But you know what that does? Provides emotional investment. So now your reactions are less based on civility and logic, and more reactionary based upon emotion. I’m not saying including one’s feelings is wrong, I’m just saying there needs to be some emotional intelligence before acting on them. (Remember, one of the reasons Hillary Clinton didn’t get elected is because we didn’t really want an “emotional” president.) It sucks that we even had this “war” and that so many people were sent to hunt down a guy deemed responsible for attacks on our country. But that’s what everyone wanted, right? Closure? There you go, you got it. Sort of. That was an awful lot of work/death/destruction for closure.
4. Oh, wait, justice? “Justice is a ‘human virtue’ that makes a person self-consistent and good; socially, justice is a social consciousness that makes a society internally harmonious and good. According to Plato, justice is a sort of specialization.” But to each his own, I suppose. Rather we discuss justice in the era of Idiocracy (the movie or the eventual reality) than Philosophy, right?
5. It’s not even really about celebrating (or not celebrating) the death of someone. I get how some people can be upset about that, and I agree that it’s kind of inhumane to celebrate the death of another human, but like one big Texas, Americans love to see the fish fry. It’s the one thing we really have in common with the jerks that killed thousands of Americans in a holy war. And really, if we can’t find common ground, how can we all be friends? (Yes, this is sarcasm. We’re no better than them. We killed for our opinions and we’re celebrating their deaths. Sound familiar?)
6. Whoever argues loudest is not the most right. I don’t think I’m more “right” than anyone else, but I believe in my opinions. You can hate me for them, but try to think about why if you do. Say it out loud, “I hate you for your opinions.” If that sounds okay to you, and the reasons you come up with are solid, logical reasons, then it was nice knowing you.
I don’t do debates. I listen to what others have to say, but it rarely ever changes my beliefs. I like to sit down (as I did today) and think about why I believe what I do. When I encounter something that makes more sense than one of these points, perhaps I’ll modify them. Until then, agree to disagree.