I consider it unseemly to rejoice in anyone’s death. Maybe that’s because the sorts of people who actually deserve to be killed are so very likely to gloat over the deaths of others. So I will not rejoice in the killing of Osama bin Laden. Still, I have to admit when the earliest rumor was simply “he’s dead and we have his body,” my gut reaction was a hope that he had not died of natural causes.
Bin Laden was a sick twisted fuck. But no country or culture has a monopoly on sick twisted fucks. We have quite a few of them ourselves. Two of them ran this country for eight years. Al Qaeda could only dream of inflicting the damage on this country that our own sick twisted fucks have wrought upon us. After all, bin Laden’s whole strategy was to get us to do to ourselves pretty much what we did to ourselves.
So, yeah, bin Laden deserved it. But I will not rejoice.
I will, however, reflect on the amount of misery and death human beings are willing to visit upon each other in the service of nonsense and lies, whether that nonsense is an afterlife with 70 virgins, a cartoon vision of a master race, or trickle down economics. Religious fanatics deserve a special hell — even though I don’t believe in hell. When you get right down to it, what you’ve got is people willing to kill other human beings for the awful crime of having a different conception of what happens to you after you die.
So long, Osama — it hasn’t been good to know ya. But we helped create you before we killed you. And I know we helped create more than one of you. I also know that we won’t learn to stop creating people like you anytime soon.