Rot In Hell

20110503

"I suppose I should be expressing some ambivalence about the targeted killing of another human being. And yet - uhhhh, no!" - Jon Stewart

"Bin Laden was not a Muslim leader; he was a mass murderer of Muslims. Indeed, Al-Qaeda has slaughtered scores of Muslims in many countries, including our own. So his demise should be welcomed by all who believe in peace and human dignity." -- President Obama

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I've been thinking a lot about this man's death, and whether its okay to celebrate it. Some have even gone so far to say that doing so is "a violation of human dignity."

Really?

There truly are some people who the human race is better without. From a Christian standpoint, that's not to say they're not worth anything (D&C 18:10), but let's get real: Just because a person is worth something doesn't mean they're working toward the betterment of mankind. 

One of the important distinctions that I believe was overlooked by the press was that people weren't so much celebrating the death of OBL as they were celebrating what that death represented. The same could be said for terrorists who cheered with the Twin Towers fell. For them, it wasn't necessarily the deaths of innocent thousands that made them happy, but the triumph of their disgustingly perverted interpretation of "Islam" that 9/11 represented.

For those who cheered at Ground Zero and at the White House, it wasn't necessarily the death of Bin Laden that was cause for joy, but the symbolic achievement wrought by nearly a decade's worth of sacrifice from courageous American soldiers.

On both 9/11 and 5/1, cheers erupted for a cause  that was advanced, rather than for deaths that were incurred along the way. The difference being that those who died on 9/11 were innocent. 

So you know what? Now that I think of it: Yeah. I am a little happy that Bin Laden is dead. I guess I do celebrate the death of some  people. And if you think that's sick and twisted or not very Christian of me or a violation of human dignity or not something that Martin Luther King Jr. would approve of (by the way, that quote wasn't real) then so be it. If you think it's stupid of me to express those sentiments publicly because it will only galvanize terrorists, guess what? We killed Osama bin Laden. Those sons of bitches are going to be galvanized no matter how we react.

The world is better off because Osama bin Laden is dead.

You live in this world. So be happy about it.


8 COMMENTS:

  1. What MLK did say in his book "Strength to Love" was, "Let us move now from the practical how to the theoretical why: Why should we love our enemies? The first reason is fairly obvious. 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. Hate multiplies hate, violence multiplies violence, and toughness multiples toughness in a descending spiral of destruction...The chain reaction of evil- hate begetting hate, wars producing more wars- must be broken, or we shall be plunged into the dark abyss of annihilation."

    Sure, it's not a word for word statement, but let's agree the sentiment is the same. Maybe you disagree with MLK's sentiment as you don't share a fundamental commonality: everyone is a human being. I thought we sang about that in Primary. Maybe sometimes we decide to forget those elementary principles to advance political or personal agendas, but they still remain. Bin Laden is a human being, and even a child of God. I'm not sure how you get to decide otherwise but I'd be cautious to be so cavalier and decisive about it.

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  2. If you don't like the MLK quote or the primary song, maybe a little LOTR.
    "Pity? It was pity that stayed Bilbo's hand. Many that live deserve death. Some that die deserve life. Can you give it to them, Frodo? Do not be too eager to deal out death in judgment. Even the very wise cannot see all ends. "
    Although I am glad Bin Laden won't hurt anyone else, I don't think we should celebrate the death of anyone.

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  3. Vickie,

    Hate to get all LOTR on you. But Gandalf, who you are quoting, fought in battle until the very end, until Sauron, specifically, was killed. When Frodo finally destroyed the ring, which destroyed Sauron, Gandalf rejoiced in Sauron’s defeat. (Unfortunately, bin Laden’s death isn’t the death of all evil in this real world that we live in.)

    Kristi mentioned celebrating the death of a mass murderer and the evil he represented and was so much a part of. Gandalf would agree (and has).

    I do believe the riotous comments and conversations about bin Laden rotting in hell are extreme and overly zealous. The greatest celebration is the celebration of protection against not just bin Laden, but any of those who seek our destruction.

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  4. Chase,

    When you quote Martin Luther King and apply it to this situation, what are you suggesting? What constitutes loving our enemies in this situation? Turning the other cheek, serving them, or not rejoicing in their destruction? I'm unsure of what you're saying here.

    I believe light can conquer darkness, but I also believe there are some people who will never stop hating us and trying to destroy us. What happens when we do not defend ourselves, our families, our freedoms? Will light remain to conquer darkness?

    bin Laden is a child of God (so is Stalin, Hitler, Cain, and literally Satan). This does not mean I should not rejoice in my country's endeavor to protect me from him--and yes, him specifically. He wanted me and you dead.

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  5. cont'd..

    Although I somewhat disagree with Kristi in rejoicing in the justice of his destruction (for me this reason is a little more self-gratifying-- although I believe Kristi is referring to justice as a whole and that it exists in this world and beyond, which I also believe), I do rejoice in the ability to remain in light, in a country that defends my God, my beliefs, my family, my freedom.

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  6. taratboyce,

    I appreciate your thoughtful response to my comment. My purpose of quoting MLK was to offer those who were unsure what the quote Kristi referenced in her post what MLK actually said. Additionally, I'm not sure what hate ever profits anyone. MLK points out it only begets more hate. While I might not readily know what loving our enemies is for this situation, I know what it is not. I know it is not demanding we drag his body through the streets and allow others to urinate on it. I know it's not reveling in the streets chanting "Ding dong the bastard's gone." I know it's not gathering together at a party complete with barbecue and beach balls with signs that say "F*$% Osama."

    Maybe you see the worth of the figurative "them" compared to, as you referred to several times, "us" (although I'm unsure if you mean Americans, the good guys, Children of God?) as unequal. I was pointing out to Kristi that she ought to be judicious in declaring anyone as anything but human. I'm not sure if you agree with her, but I'd offer similar caution.

    You asked if light will conquer darkness if we dont defend ourselves or our freedoms or our families. Good question. However, we know that light will conquer darkness, regardless of the circumstances on Earth. We know who "wins" in the end. Elder Marion G. Romney (LDS Apostle) said, "For this I know—and of it you may likewise be assured—in the end, righteousness will triumph; the powers of darkness will be put to flight; peace will come." It is Heavenly Father's plan. But also part of the plan are two great commandments: love God, and love others. There was no condition for that love placed on the latter (and certainly not of the former).

    I have no interest to dive into a discussion on whether or not we should or shouldn't have executed Bin Laden. I will only suggest that we not forget that ALL are children of God, and it is not for us to decide how God will judge them, or certainly if they are a member of the human family.

    I only hope that closure and peace are brought to the victims of 9/11. I am not naive enough to assume that the death of Bin Laden will make our country, or our family, or our beliefs any more safe than without him- but perhaps a different kind of safe. I'm confident someone else will rise to power who will enact "justice" for the killing of Bin Laden. I pray our military are kept safe. I hope for leaders who will work toward peace and understanding. I believe good will conquer evil, but am careful to flippantly label which as which.

    Amidst the escalating conflict in the middle east, President Hinckley addressed the body of the LDS Church on the subject of peace in the April 2003 General conference. He said, "I think our Father in Heaven must have wept as He has looked down upon His children through the centuries as they have squandered their divine birthright in ruthlessly destroying one another." I appreciated that he picks no one group or people to be above the other. Instead he comments on the horrible tragedy that war and conflict bring about. In responding to where the Church stands in 'all of this' he continued, "First, let it be understood that we have no quarrel with the Muslim people or with those of any other faith. We recognize and teach that all the people of the earth are of the family of God. And as He is our Father, so are we brothers and sisters with family obligations one to another." (http://lds.org/general-conference/2003/04/war-and-peace?lang=eng&query=peace+war) What are those obligations exactly? I'm still trying to figure that out, but I know they exist.

    I am a friend of Kristi and Brock. I appreciate the humor this blog often provides. I commented to express my sentiments on the occasion, and hope no ill feelings were had by them or any other reader.

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  7. Taratboyce,
    I guess I ought to clarify that I view Bin Laden more like Gollum and not Sauron. Circumstances created Bin Laden to be what he was, just as the ring corrupted Gollum. I just don't think we should celebrate his death, but instead, mourn his wasted life.

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  8. Vickie, I love it. Very well said. I freaking love Lord of the Rings.

    Chase, I was not offended by your post and I appreciate your response. Although I don't believe it is naive to think bin Laden's death won't make us any more safe, I don't believe anything I wrote to you would contradict what you have said or suggest that I think "them" or "us" are in any way unequal. bin Laden's religion or country has nothing to do with why I am grateful he is gone. Being grateful that he is gone doesn't mean I don't believe he is a human or that I hate him either, or support any kind of vulgar behavior period. (I think the misunderstanding is my fault since I didn't respond to Kristi's post, but rather to your comment.) As I wrote to Vickie, I celebrate protection against not just bin Laden but anyone who seeks others' literal destruction.

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