i was sixteen years old, sitting in first period world-history when news of the first plane hitting the tower came.
and i laughed.
because it was outrageous--unfathomable. and i was sixteen. and terrified. so i laughed.
the world had ended. in that moment, some version of all that i had ever known, ceased to be.
last night, the news of bin Laden's death came in. via twitter--yes, certainly this is a different world in more ways than one.
i don't own a television, but i opened up the new york times live feed in my browser and marveled that modern technology would allow me the convenience of watching the President's address. live.
and as i waited for the President Obama and his speech and some directive as to how i should be feeling, i thought:
tomorrow, i might wake up, and it might be a new world all over again. and that might not be a good thing.
what will the aftermath bring? what repercussions await us here?
am i glad that a man pumping so much pure hatred into the world is gone? of course. is there a sense of sweet relief? i think so--maybe just a little.
truth be told, i don't know as much as i should--about any of this. about the politics or the conflict or why some decisions are made and others are not.
i appreciated Obama emphasizing that we are not at war with Islam, that Osama was not a Muslim leader.
however, it was the following that unsettled me:
and on nights like this one, we can say to those families who have lost loved ones to al-Qaida's terror: justice has been done.
justice has been done.
(i'm gonna let that hang there. in the air. for a minute).
i understand the sentiment. i understand what was trying to be said.
an eye for an eye?
there's this line in macbeth--perhaps my favorite in all of shakespeare. macbeth murders the wife and children of macduff. and macduff is urged by another to change that grief into anger and to avenge the loss of his family. to bring about revenge on the bloody and ruthless macbeth.
and macduff turns around says: he has no children.
and those four words, those four words say it all,
there is no equal justice.
justice has been done.
justice has been done?
there is no. equal. justice.
it does not exist.
in the immediate wake of september 11th i remember being particularly upset by images of people around the world taking to the streets to celebrate and cheer.
let us not be those people now.
i would like nothing more than for a wave of the unity that overtook this country following that fateful day in september to return. but let us not be those people cheering in the streets. let us not be shortsighted. let us not lose sight. let it not be one more death that incites that within us.
let us quietly bow our heads, give thanks, and go about working for change and unity, as opposed to assuming it is our right. let us, as americans, lead by example. let us practice that too-often-under-utilized wonder-drug, humility.
(please do note, these are my opinions. we are all entitled to our own. keep that in mind.)