As a society, we tend to teach our kids right from wrong and instill proper morals, as well as character in order for our children to grow into responsible and well mannered adults. We teach our children that murder is wrong, as are other sins. We strive to teach our children to follow the laws and rules of life and to be the best they can in all they do. We teach them that our military is is full of selfless people that are willing to put their life on the line in order to keep our country safe. We have lived through and shown them the way our country was destroyed and torn apart on September 11, 2001 when we were faced with and had to endure our country's worse terrorist attack on our own soil. We watched as planes flew into the Twin Towers, The Pentagon, and a field in Pennsylvania and we watched the Towers come crumbling down. Sadly, we all watched as thousands of innocent Americans became victims in the latest terrorist attack that Al Qaeda had set out for against the United States and managed to accomplish. The rest of the world watched us, as we fell apart, just as they have watched as we have managed to rebuild ourselves. I won't say overcome what happened, because, in all reality, I really am not sure if we can really ever just overcome this type of terrorist attack. We saw our country come together as one and show more patriotism than Americans had ever shown before. Within time, we saw many selfless, young Americans stand at a recruiting office and sign their name over to our military, knowing that in due time, they would be face to face with war, all the while never knowing what the ended outcome would be or what the future would hold. For years now, we have not known who will return from war or what families will be greeted by that dreadful knock and the conversation that starts with "On behalf of the United States Army (or whatever branch they were apart of)....." before hitting their floor because their whole world has just come crashing down.
As Americans scrambled and fought to hold together, Muslim nations across the world condemned the attacks, Iran had over 60,000 Spectators gathered with candles, observing a moment of silence. Al Qaeda was the one of the few that cheered for this attack, one that we refused to let hold us down. Yet, here we are rejoicing over the death of Bin Laden in ways that we shouldn't be. What happened to us being better people? In no way am I saying that it is wrong that this demon is dead. What is wrong are the ones standing in the streets yelling, screaming, and chanting over a death, as though they were taking place in a World Championship win, Superbowl Win, or the win of their favorite baseball team win as they win the World Series. This is not how patriotism is supposed to work. I do firmly believe in an eye for an eye, but I don't believe in the response that I have seen. How can we preach things to our kids and to society, yet we act in different ways. I am not against the war, because yes, I do believe that our goal and mission in this War on Terrorism was to capture Osama bin Laden and to take down Al Qaeda. We have accomplished one of our goals, but the other one, I am not sure will ever happen. There will always be terrorists out to seek some form of attack on different nations. At this point, I can't help but to wonder if the near future we will undergo another attack on either our soil or against the Americans we have willingly and selflessly serving overseas. Justice may have been served in a sense and the monster may be dead, but the war is far from being over. Al Qaeda is now going to want to seek revenge and retaliation is now religiously on their minds. Think about it, when we were attacked, we set out to seek revenge, just as they will. The snake may be dead, but this snake is one with many heads.
In many ways, I find that we are showing double standards to our younger generation in how many have responded to the news that the world came to know in a matter of moments. Children are not understanding why so many adults are celebrating in the ways that they are over Bin Laden's death. What morals are the children now being taught to see many jump up and down, yell, and chant over an outright kill? How are children now supposed to comprehend the difference between justice and revenge? Or, is there even a difference under these circumstances?
At this point, I pray for comfort and peace. I pray that retaliation will not be brought upon our country and our people in another attack. I also hope that Americans and people across the world, are alert and fully aware of the unknown acts of revenge that could be lurking around as I write this. I hope that as parents, we are capable of explaining to our children how the world is better off without this dangerous and disturbing demon. Osama Bin Laden does not in any way deserve a place on earth, after all the destruction he has caused, the amount of bloodshed he inspired and had Al Qaeda carry out, and the lives and families he has forever disrupted. As many people may think that the past ten years is the extent of the time he has caused such things, I hope they are capable of further educating themselves that Bin Laden has brought grief and heartache to millions of people for far more than fifteen years. I also hope that people realize and understand that Al Qaeda is just one of many terrorist groups and extremists around the world.
In ending, I hope this brings some closure to the victims of 9/11 and their families. You will never be forgotten, and just as many people, my heart goes out to you all. Just as it does to our military and military families.
"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