The power of social media was extremely apparent in the aftermath of the announcement of Osama bin Laden’s death. For some people, Facebook was the first clue that something was afoot. Numerous people started speculating as to what the big news would be when President Barack Obama took the podium. Immediately following the national address, news feeds were flooded with a wide range of responses.
“I’m a military spouse. My husband left to fight in the war against terror when my oldest son was only 4 months old, and was gone for 2 years after that. The actions of Bin Laden have defined to a large degree how and where we’ve lived for the past 10 years. I’m glad he’s gone: one fewer nightmare in the world. However, the world is still full of evil people willing to do wicked things. We need to be on guard, always.” — Kimberly Smith, freelance writer
“I support our military men and women, not that I always agree with the missions they are sent on. I cannot, however, feel joy or pride knowing that someone has died, especially by the hands of another human. What Bin Laden stood for was pure evil and against what millions stood for, but that does not justify his death. His vision and plan took thousands of lives. This was undeniably wrong, yet is it mankind’s job to ‘make things right’ by taking an eye for an eye? I leave that kind of judgment and action up to a higher being. ‘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.” –– Liz Comparetto, Atlanta, Ga.
“The world may not be a safer place today, but it’s certainly a better place.” — Andy Good, sales manager, Toledo, Ohio
“I’m glad he’s finally dead but I’m afraid of what will happen next. This war on terror is not over. I’m worried it will never be over.” — Amy Dillon, Akron, Ohio
“When 9/11 happened, I was crushed. Having two boys at the time, I remember worrying about them and the draft potential down the road knowing the retaliation would be long and violent and to no good end. I also remember being angry. Not scared, but angry and a family member said, ‘You know what we should do? We should go to a mosque and pray with them.’ It dawned on me that his (Osama’s) actions doomed thousands and thousands of followers of Islam. His death is nothing but the completion of something the U.S. started. Nothing more.” –– Mark Walton, Dad, N.Y.
“I am glad they finally found him, but I never rejoice at death. As far as our country is concerned, I think we are much better off with him dead than alive, where he could still control and organize terror. While I understand the celebrations, it concerned me to see all the young people so excited at the news of his death. As a Christian, it bothers me to see people so excited about vengeance, no matter what the initial cause.” — Angela Young, writer/freelancer, Cincinnati, Ohio
“When I heard the news, I had a massive flashback to 9/11. I couldn’t believe it was ten years ago and when the news came, I felt the same emotions as I did that day. I was scared of what was going to come next, but unlike then, I felt jubilation because finally in my time I was able to see good conquer pure evil and a man who caused so much pain across the world was finally taken down. Also, I felt the lines we have been fighting in (Republican vs. Democrat, rich vs. poor) were erased once again and for once again in my lifetime we can all be what we are….American.” — Cathy McFe, Rochester, N.Y.
“Does this mean I can keep my shoes on at the airport again?” –Eric Pfaff, restaurant manager, Toledo, Ohio