In a post-9/11 world, when you hear that there’s a huge national security announcement coming late at night on a Sunday, it’s easy to think the worst.
Nuclear? Natural? Asteroid?
National security didn’t prompt panic like this a decade ago. I wouldn’t have called my parents, texted my brother, contacted my best friend. But as I know how many people flooded phone lines to say goodbyes on September 11, I wanted to cover my bases. “Just in case” is a reality now.
A man gave the command that changed life as we knew it and ushered in that reality. So while I wish Wolf Blitzer had asked his White House sources tonight if he could report that we didn’t need to panic, I felt pride when I heard that that man was dead.
Osama bin Laden is dead. It feels good to say it.
It’s hardly an even trade. This is one person, compared to the thousands killed in New York, Washington, and Pennsylvania; and the military and civilians killed in the hunt to track him down. There’s a ripple effect that spreads from each of those dead to their families, friends, acquaintances. Then you consider the people living and working in New York that day. The people who enlisted. The people who worried about a draft. It expands out to touch so many.
It feels strange to celebrate a human being’s death. But he was more monster than human. And while I’m not running out to celebrate in the streets, I am sitting on my couch, watching Wolf Blizter break down the military operation, feeling a sense of satisfaction.
It’s nice to get some good news for a change.