Why do you cheer for Osama bin Laden's death?

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dumbzebra
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Why do you cheer for Osama bin Laden's death?

Postby dumbzebra » Fri May 06, 2011 2:39 pm UTC

Disclaimer: This is not about whether cheering for a person's death is justified or not, nor (if that impression is built by poor wording) do I want to defend Osama bin Laden or his deeds in any way. Also do I not want to diminish the tragic events of 9/11.

It might just be because I, or my country was never affected by any Islamic Terrorists attacks, but I see no reason for the masses of Americans that accumulated in the streets on the news that bin Laden has been shot.
Why? Because I believe the USA or the western world as a whole has never been affected by Islamic terrorism as much as portrayed.
First, "Other than" 3000 deaths, make that 60000 affected counting 20 family members per person etc., which make about 0.02% of the American population, most American people were not hit by any damage. Also your life wasn't influenced by the attacks in any way. You still consume the same things, live the same culture, love, flourish, work and study the way it was before. Other than having a say in a conflict in Afghanistan, and being responsible for making flight security a bit more obnoxious, the person "bin Laden" had no impact on your lifestyle whatsoever. You did not have to spend your childhood in bomb shelters or a concentration camp, nor did he (most probably) kill your family. So what about his death improves your life in a way that makes you dance at the twin tower memorial?
Second, despite the things said above, how does his demise improve the situation? Al Qaida is still out there, bin Laden was probably not the main leader for a long time with the "new threat" officially (confirmed by the US - government) going over to another guy about a year ago. Plus the fact, that he now severs as a martyr to his followers, and the call for revenge making the situation even more dangerous. So again, what did change?
As the great philosopher Socrates once said: "No."

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Re: Why do you cheer for Osama bin Laden's death?

Postby broken_escalator » Fri May 06, 2011 2:45 pm UTC

I didn't cheer, and no one I know cheered (in the streets or elsewhere). Sure I saw some updates on bookface about it, but people say stupid shit on that all the time, no exceptions. Meanwhile, someone somewhere cheered in America and that's neat for them, but they aren't representative of me or the people I know.

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Re: Why do you cheer for Osama bin Laden's death?

Postby scarecrovv » Fri May 06, 2011 3:48 pm UTC

broken_escalator wrote:I didn't cheer, and no one I know cheered (in the streets or elsewhere). Sure I saw some updates on bookface about it, but people say stupid shit on that all the time, no exceptions. Meanwhile, someone somewhere cheered in America and that's neat for them, but they aren't representative of me or the people I know.

Same here on all counts.

I didn't cheer. I was happy, but I wasn't dancing. I'd say that while my personal life has not been affected by terrorism, I have a perfectly valid reason to be angry about mass murder, especially when committed by people who declare my way of life and my deeply held personal beliefs to be evil and worthy of violent destruction. Also, I am angry because the attacks whipped up the crazier elements of our society into a frenzy, causing them to do all manner of silly and destructive things to our civil liberties. Justice has been served. We can quibble about whether it was served optimally, or completely, but it has been served nonetheless, and for that reason I am pleased.

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Re: Why do you cheer for Osama bin Laden's death?

Postby eSOANEM » Fri May 06, 2011 4:08 pm UTC

I did not cheer.

It's possible that living in the UK, as a result of having the better part of a century of terrorist acts, has led to 7/7 having a much less marked impact on the British psyche than 9/11 did on the American and so my outrage at the acts of islamist terrorists (and therefore at Osama Bin Laden specifically) has been dulled, but I take no pleasure in any man's death. Assassinating mass murderers is not justice and so I cannot take pleasure in justice being done. Had Bin Laden been captured and given a fair trial, I would have cheered.

As it is, his death affects my emotional state as much as hearing about the death of any other person I've never met; if anything, it saddens me more because it will inevitably lead to an increase in violence (in the short term at least) in retaliation.

tl;dr: no. His death saddens me because, whilst he was by no means an innocent, his death will lead to innocent deaths.
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Re: Why do you cheer for Osama bin Laden's death?

Postby SamaraLexx » Fri May 06, 2011 4:18 pm UTC

I lost loved ones in 9/11 and when I heard the news that he was dead, I cried. I don't really know why, intellectually I knew that this didn't bring anyone back and it didn't suddenly solve the problem, but my knee jerk reaction was just to cry. For a little while I felt like the person who killed my friends was dead.

And after that little while, my brain took back over and I didn't feel like that anymore. I saw cheerleaders in front of the White House and I was disgusted. I think for the last ten years we've been fed this one man's face as "our enemy" and that we'll never stop chasing him, that when it finally happened, certain people just had to cheer. The more they had put into the idea that he was our one enemy, the more they wanted to cheer I guess.

Everyone had different reasons. Maybe some people felt just that elated that he was dead. Maybe some people were just being mindless drones. Personally, I would wish that no matter how happy you felt for whatever reason, you didn't go dance in the street and I would also hope that we wouldn't have to be judged as a country by the people who did go do that. *shrug*

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Re: Why do you cheer for Osama bin Laden's death?

Postby podbaydoor » Fri May 06, 2011 4:43 pm UTC

Symbolic. It's a symbolic death. Symbols are very strong.

Also it was an excuse to party. *shrug* Americans find excuses to party all the damn time. (See: Cinco de Mayo)
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Re: Why do you cheer for Osama bin Laden's death?

Postby Triangle_Man » Fri May 06, 2011 4:50 pm UTC

I am ludicrisly nuetral on this as I am other things. In theory I should be upset given that this goes against my personal notions of justice. However, a part of me seems to recognize that death really was the only outcome for Osama given the atrocities he committed/planned. So while it's hard to feel sympathetic for a man like him, I guess my greater morality prevents me from getting any joy from his death, even though he was a complete bastard.

So I guess I'm just...nuetral.
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Re: Why do you cheer for Osama bin Laden's death?

Postby Gears » Sat May 07, 2011 11:05 pm UTC

Because an evil man is dead. I feel no remorse nor do I feel I should for a man who orchestrated the deaths of 3000 of my fellow Americans.
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Re: Why do you cheer for Osama bin Laden's death?

Postby mstjarna » Sun May 08, 2011 1:03 am UTC

I didn't cheer, and neither did anyone I know.

I was happy that he was not tortured first before being killed, though. Even monsters do not deserve that, and is was a real possibility.

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Re: Why do you cheer for Osama bin Laden's death?

Postby Jave D » Sun May 08, 2011 2:56 am UTC

I didn't cheer. I thought it was justified and definitely good to have happened. Now in retrospect, I wish I had cheered. Then I could have enjoyed that small moment of justice. Instead I went on bookface and looked at all the knee-jerk articles - apparently already written and just waiting to be fired like a gas grenade into the riot of society - about how so-and-so didn't cheer (and is superior) and didn't think it was justified because they're against killing no matter what (and are superior). Then, not sufficiently buzz killed, I went to the right-wing portfolio of propaganda, and realized that I wasn't surprised to see all the blogpostnewscraptainment about how Osama wasn't really dead (SHOW US THE DEATH CERTIFICATE, OBAMA!), or how he was just killed to make Obama look good politically, or of course how he wasn't dead but the lying government lied and said he was, to make Obama look good politically, or how it was actually Bush that done the killing because hey, Pakistan, Iraq, 2011, 2007, same difference lol! And then I realized that not only did Osama deserve killing, but that a whole lot of other fucking dumbasses do too.

So. Yep. No cheering here. I'm superior!

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Re: Why do you cheer for Osama bin Laden's death?

Postby Ambermutt » Sun May 08, 2011 5:42 am UTC

I didn't cheer, but right now I'm not living in the US. I can't imagine Americans (who seem to be doing most, if not all, of the the cheering) in foreign countries would feel all that comfortable making a huge display of happiness the way the mobs built up around the US.

Would I have cheered? Maybe if I had been around more people who felt like cheering, since this is a huge symbolic victory (and an excuse to cheer). For the people directly affected (family killed, friends in war, being in war, etc), there was a feeling of something that was pending being finished even while being aware that the conflict is nowhere's near complete (probably, I can't really speak for them).On the other hand, I am aware that killing him doesn't really change the situation, apart from retaliation (I mean that in two ways, retaliating for the 9/11 attacks, and the threats from Al Qaeda that have already followed).

It would have been better (in terms of justice and politics) if he had been captured, tried, and convicted.

I heard a lot from different friends. They were all disgusted, absolutely and utterly disgusted, that people were cheering over someone's death. Some said that they didn't believe he had been killed at all and Obama was just stating it to favor his reelection. Others that civilians had to have been killed (this after reading an article that explicitly said "No civilians killed", which is why it came up). I heard a lot of "Why did it take so long?", and no one believing what they read in the papers.

My first reaction was really just wondering how it happened, who was hurt, and what was going on with the helicopter that crashed? (Anyone know?).
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Re: Why do you cheer for Osama bin Laden's death?

Postby Izawwlgood » Sun May 08, 2011 6:01 am UTC

dumbzebra wrote:First, "Other than" 3000 deaths, make that 60000 affected counting 20 family members per person etc., which make about 0.02% of the American population, most American people were not hit by any damage. Also your life wasn't influenced by the attacks in any way. You still consume the same things, live the same culture, love, flourish, work and study the way it was before.

If you think that the only people who were affected by 9/11 were those who directly lost people in the event, I'm not really sure how to explain to you why the death of Osama bin Laden is something that many Americans felt was a strongly positive event.

I would say bin Laden was one of the most influencial men of the last 30 years, and not because he killed 3,000 people.

Furthermore, assuming 'All Americans did [anything]' is pretty silly.
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Re: Why do you cheer for Osama bin Laden's death?

Postby TheAmazingRando » Sun May 08, 2011 7:25 am UTC

I live in the USA and pretty much everyone I know was talking about how terrible it was that people were celebrating the death of a human being.
Of course the TV crews managed to find people partying, but given that the news broke in the evening, I imagine most of the people partying in the streets were out drinking anyway and just got caught up in the zeitgeist of it (not to mention were eager for an excuse to get plastered on a Sunday).

I was actually very surprised by how reasonable most people I knew were about the situation, even the ones who've given the impression in the past of being your stereotypical "nuke the middle east" idiots. Please don't characterize us, as a nation, by those of us the media decided were exceptional enough to report on.

Also, I wasn't directly affected by 9/11, but it happened when I was 12 years old and, coinciding with the onset of adolescence and all that fun stuff, was pretty much the defining moment of my coming of age. You can't really quantify the importance of something like that.

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Re: Why do you cheer for Osama bin Laden's death?

Postby saus » Sun May 08, 2011 8:50 am UTC

Half of my life my country's primary concern officially has been the war on terror. Almost every day we hear some sort of news that all comes back to terrorism. And Osama bin laden is the poster boy for it all. It's an emotional, irrational thing. We got the bad guy, yay.

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Re: Why do you cheer for Osama bin Laden's death?

Postby Giant Speck » Sun May 08, 2011 11:01 am UTC

I was at work when we heard the news, so we all momentarily clapped and cheered.

Then we had cake.
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Re: Why do you cheer for Osama bin Laden's death?

Postby BurningLed » Sun May 08, 2011 2:18 pm UTC

saus wrote:Half of my life my country's primary concern officially has been the war on terror. Almost every day we hear some sort of news that all comes back to terrorism. And Osama bin laden is the poster boy for it all. It's an emotional, irrational thing. We got the bad guy, yay.


This. It's a symbolic thing, like when we landed on the moon. Did this significantly affect most people in a corporeal, tangible manner? No. But it represents some sort of victory for America, which makes people cheer.
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Re: Why do you cheer for Osama bin Laden's death?

Postby hawkinsssable » Sun May 08, 2011 2:37 pm UTC

I'm going to go quote some Robert Fisk, because he's eloquent and because he's one of a very small number of Western journalists who have managed to interview, and maintain sparodic communication with, Bin Laden. He's the only person I've read who has put his death in this particular context.

Robert Fisk wrote:A middle-aged nonentity, a political failure outstripped by history – by the millions of Arabs demanding freedom and democracy in the Middle East – died in Pakistan yesterday. And then the world went mad.

...

The Americans were drunk with joy. David Cameron thought it "a massive step forward". India described it as a "victorious milestone". "A resounding triumph," Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu boasted. But after 3,000 American dead on 9/11, countless more in the Middle East, up to half a million Muslims dead in Iraq and Afghanistan and 10 years trying to find Bin Laden, pray let us have no more "resounding triumphs". Revenge attacks? Perhaps they will come, by the little groupuscules in the West, who have no direct contact with al-Qa'ida. Be sure, someone is already dreaming up a "Brigade of the Martyr Osama bin Laden". Maybe in Afghanistan, among the Taliban.

But the mass revolutions in the Arab world over the past four months mean that al-Qa'ida was already politically dead. Bin Laden told the world – indeed, he told me personally – that he wanted to destroy the pro-Western regimes in the Arab world, the dictatorships of the Mubaraks and the Ben Alis. He wanted to create a new Islamic Caliphate. But these past few months, millions of Arab Muslims rose up and were prepared for their own martyrdom – not for Islam but for freedom and liberty and democracy. Bin Laden didn't get rid of the tyrants. The people did. And they didn't want a caliph.

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Re: Why do you cheer for Osama bin Laden's death?

Postby Von Haus » Sun May 08, 2011 4:44 pm UTC

hawkinsssable wrote:
Robert Fisk wrote:But the mass revolutions in the Arab world over the past four months mean that al-Qa'ida was already politically dead. Bin Laden told the world – indeed, he told me personally – that he wanted to destroy the pro-Western regimes in the Arab world, the dictatorships of the Mubaraks and the Ben Alis. He wanted to create a new Islamic Caliphate. But these past few months, millions of Arab Muslims rose up and were prepared for their own martyrdom – not for Islam but for freedom and liberty and democracy. Bin Laden didn't get rid of the tyrants. The people did. And they didn't want a caliph.

This is similar the main interesting thing I found out over the last few days, that Bin Laden and al-Qa'ida originally aimed their sights on the middle eastern countries who had gone down a route they disagreed with, then realised that they couldn't do anything about them because those middle eastern countries were backed by US foreign policy and so al-Qa'ida shifted it's sights to America. If America hadn't tried to influence the middle east the last ten years may have been completely different, better or worse I have no idea. From my point of view the best thing coming from the middle east at the moment is all the revolutions in countries with people taking freedom for themselves, what I wonder is has that only happened because of the Afghan and Iraq wars or would it have happened anyway.

As to my personal reaction of Osama's death? That's pretty much summed up as follows: "Why couldn't they have waited just one week?" But what the heck, I'm evidently a little bit selfish.
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Re: Why do you cheer for Osama bin Laden's death?

Postby AvatarIII » Mon May 09, 2011 10:05 am UTC

mstjarna wrote:-I was happy that he was not tortured first before being killed, though. Even monsters do not deserve that, and is was a real possibility.


this is a good point actually, ever since it happened i was bemoaning that he wasn't put to trial, but i guess if he had been captured, he would have most likely gone to guantanamo bay and never heard from again, rather than gone to trial for war crimes at The Hague, so i guess in that way, his death was a good thing.

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Re: Why do you cheer for Osama bin Laden's death?

Postby Intrigued » Mon May 09, 2011 3:12 pm UTC

preface: I wasn't out cheering.

That said, I think the reason that SOME americans were out in the street cheering about his death, even if they weren't directly affected by the 9/11 events, should be fairly obvious.

He has been put up as the figurehead (by us as much as by them) of terrorism against America. 9/11 wasn't about an isolated killing of a group of people, it was about an attack against America as a whole, an attempt to spread fear and doubt in our society. It was an unexpected mass murder of a large number of civilians, and it was meant as a threat to people like me. So, even though I wasn't directly affected by the tragedy, it affects me. It's just survival instinct for people to want to neutralize that threat, and his death is seen by many as at least a step in the direction towards that.

I know I can never say whether it will cause more harm or good in the long run, which is why I don't cheer for it, but I certainly understand the people who do.

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Re: Why do you cheer for Osama bin Laden's death?

Postby Ambermutt » Mon May 09, 2011 3:35 pm UTC

Here´s an article in the New York Times about people celebrating bin Laden´s death. It touches on the "why people celebrate" aspect. Interestingly enough, it also uses that phrase "Justice is served", which many people on these forums have argued about (the whole: "justice would be served if he had been sent to trial" thing).

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/06/health/06revenge.html?ref=health

It also points out, in the second to last paragraph, that people who normally would not cheer over this were caught up in the general atmosphere, and joined in despite their misgivings.
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The calmness of its light.


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