What a crazy few days, huh?
We've had windchills here in Minneapolis. Two of William's Little League games have been postponed due to cold. IN MAY. Now, given my love of all things long sleeved and layered, you know that I don't mind a little nip in the air. But this is getting old even for me. Because not only is it freaking cold, it's gray and dreary and miserable. It's like November. And November kind of sucks even when it's really November. Sucks even more when it crashes May's spot on the calendar.
Osama Bin Laden is dead, so they say. I will admit here, when I first heard the news I felt....nothing. It was as if someone had told me, "Hey, the sky is up and the ground is down." My non-reaction elicited more feeling than the news itself. Why wasn't I feeling elated, like the people on the news and so many of my friends, in real life and on facebook? People were giving hi-fives, cheering, whooping.
The man was bad, no doubt. Evil, perhaps. But still. I remembered scenes that were shown on the news after 9/11. Streets filled with people; men, women and children, celebrating the devastation that had just happened in New York City, and Pennsylvania and at the Pentagon. The images of trapped people jumping to their deaths from high atop the World Trade Center were still fresh in our minds and here were these people acting like it was Mardi Gras. Acting like their favorite team had just won the Super Bowl.
I won't do that. I won't celebrate death, no matter how despicable, how misguided, how utterly demonic the dead person is/was. No matter how much he deserved it.
Don't get me wrong. I am patriotic. I love my country, and I love and honor and respect every single person who has sacrificed to make this a great place to live. I love the fact that I can practice whatever religion I want, I can speak my mind freely and I can do these things without worrying about troops sneaking into my home at night and hurting my kids because of it. I am proud to be from the United States, and no matter who is in charge, I honor and respect them.
I can't even begin to describe how I feel about the men and women who fight for these freedoms. They are truly heroic, every last one of them. And those who have given their lives for these freedoms? No words. They are the reason we are able to go on facebook or stand around at parties and barbecues and bitch about the President or our government or gas prices or whatever and not have to worry about finding our heads on sticks the next day. They are someone's son, daughter, daddy, mommy, wife, husband, best friend, first crush, roommate, big brother, baby sister...they left us too soon, but not in vain. Never in vain.
Death is ugly. It's dark and permanent. It's nothing I want to celebrate. Bin Laden not being on this earth anymore is a good thing. He is going to have to answer to someone, be judged by a being much more powerful than any of us. But I won't high five anyone because he's dead. I won't show my kids that a person dying is a call to party. What will I celebrate? The day we finally stop hating, the day people stop killing and dying. The day a mother doesn't have to hear that her son died in a country thousands of miles away. The day that there is no news to report other than sports scores and Mrs. Billie Jo Smith celebrating her 100th birthday.
The day the sun finally starts shining again.
Here in Minneapolis, on this Tuesday morning in May, the sun is out.
And it's shining.