Sunday, May 1, 2011

A Brief Digression...

Tonight there is only one thing on TV. Announcements and celebrations at the news of the death of Osama bin Laden.

I've been watching all of this coverage with both fascination and sadness. Fascination with the passion that so many are exhibiting and sadness at the lack of humanity being displayed.

When people are asked what they're celebrating, they respond that it is the death of bin Laden that has brought them out in such large numbers. Those of us with facebook accounts need only open our pages to see a newsfeed full of status updates glorifying and celebrating the taking of a human life.

I'm not saying that bin Laden didn't do terrible things; he certainly did. He acted in ways that were atrocious and inhumane and his actions resulted in the death of thousands upon thousands of innocent people. Every one of these deaths has been a tragedy that needs to be mourned as a chair sits empty in the house of a family.

However, through our celebration of the death of bin Laden, a man who has become demonized through his own actions around the world, we seem to have lost site of something important.

bin Laden is a man. A human being. A life has ended, and no matter who that person is and what they did during life I feel that it's important to take a moment to recognize the passing of a spirit, a soul, an inner voice, however you personally label the little piece within all of us that makes us human.

I may not agree with the choices that bin Laden made, what he stood for, and the way in which he chose to express himself, but I don't want to lose my own humanity to anger and hatred. Instead I choose to love. Not to love the actions taken by the man who has reigned over al-Qaeda with terror and violence, but to love this man as a member of the human race, someone else with whom I shared this brief blink of time as a human citizen of the world.

Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.
~Martin Luther King Jr.

1 comment:

  1. I'm worried. I don't believe it was really him and I don't know the underlying reason they are saying they killed him or the repercussions that are going to culminate as a result of either killing him or leading people to believe they did.
    A quick burial at sea?