May 1st 2011 will undoubtedly be another one of those days in history where you remember where you where and what you were doing when you heard the news … the news that after almost 20 elusive years, Osama bin Laden had been found and killed by US Special Forces in Pakistan.
Obviously the outpouring of joy from Americans was clear to see when a crowd formed at the White House chanting “USA, USA, USA!” while others were interviewed on camera using words like payback, revenge, score-settled and karma.
To be honest I find it hard to celebrate death … it sounds like an oxymoron and it feels wrong … even if it is the death of the most evil man in recent history. Maybe it would be different if I was an American citizen or had a more personal connection the events of 9/11 but from where I stand it’s difficult to know what to feel and how to react.
Part of the following quotation has been trending globally on Twitter for the last few hours so I thought I’d post the full thing here …
”I mourn the loss of thousands of precious lives, but I will not rejoice in the death of one, not even an enemy. Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.”
Martin Luther King, Jr.
What is the right response?