Last night I was getting ready to change the channel from the nightly, fairly eh, KOMU student news channel when the anchor broke the news that our 44th President would be giving a speech within the next 20 minutes. It was unannounced up until that point and the station had no further comment on the subject other than to plead for us to stay tuned for further explanation. Eventually we got news that the speech was most likely going to involve some aspect of America's national security, but by that point nearly every station on the tube was reporting that public enemy number one, Osama Bin Laden, had been killed.
This news floored me. My roommate and I had predicted that Obama would be announcing anything from marijuana legalization to the first documented contact with an alien species. I was truly surprised and filled with emotion that could not be expressed with words when I finally understood what history I was witnessing. Then, without notice, a second, more depressing surprise occurred.
With impeccable speed my fellow classmates across the campus began to celebrate. Really celebrate. World Series winning, Super Bowl champion, College Football Gameday- celebrating. Facebook statuses were exploding. Twitter was hotter than anything I have ever experienced. "F*ck you Osama!" "Bout damn time you piece of sh*t"... Is this really the reaction that should have have occurred? The man was truly a bad seed and I will be the first to admit that the world is, without a doubt, a safer place without him giving direction to his many followers across the globe. But really, does anyone deserve this type of farewell?
I truly hope that those within direct contact to the horrors this man created feel the best type of closure possible. No one should ever have to go through anything close to what the 9/11 victims and families experienced, yet the type of rallies I witnessed across this great nation last night and into the early morning were embarrassing. I sat on my couch for nearly 5 hours just reading what this free speaking country had to say about one of the biggest threats to the U.S. in the country's history. When I finally closed the last internet window on my computer I almost felt bad for OBL. This country was built on so many great things, but last night's display of freedom of speech was one of horrible proportions. Many of us grew up being taught to love our enemy and to treat those how we wish to be treated. No one in their right mind would want to be spoken of in the way one of God's children was last night.
Proverbs 23:17 says, "Do not rejoice when your enemy falls, and let not your heart be glad when he stumbles", and Ezekiel 33:10 states, "As I live, declares the Lord God, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live."
I cannot sit here and pretend to believe that Osama Bin Laden would have one day changed and asked for forgiveness for the numerous deaths he is responsible for, but if the Lord above cannot celebrate the demise of such a man, who am I to cheer him into the grave? This man had a family. As horrific as it may seem, there are those grieving today. Death is not a happy thing. I do not believe that a joyful thought is one that should ever accompany the news that any person has been killed. So as this victorious day in American history is destined to be remembered as the day Obama caught Osama, I urge all those out there not to rejoice in the death of one man, but strive for peace in these harsh times.