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Should kids celebrate bin Laden death?


My 12-year-old asked me if it was legal to kill Osama bin Laden.

This question left me stunned for a few moments. She clearly knew killing anyone is wrong. And of course, it is. But in this case, I said, the victim was the brain behind the killing of 3,000 people in New York and went into hiding to flee justice, so he deserved it. I felt very uncomfortable saying this, because as Americans, we still believe in the court system as the ultimate arbiter of guilt or innocence.

In the same way, the celebrations over bin Laden's death also rub me the wrong way. They are filled with gloating 20-somethings who fail to see how complicated the world is. Should our culture celebrate death? Isn't that what we criticize the terrorists for doing? I have never before seen mainstream Americans rejoice this way over a death, even if it was of a despised enemy.

You can wrap yourself in the flag all you want, but bin Laden's demise is a time for solemnity, not partying.

Photo by Josh Pesavento/Flickr

Categories: Lois Solomon (211)


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About the authors
Gretchen Day-Bryant has a son in high school and a daughter in middle school. She’s lived to tell about the struggles of juggling little kids and work.
Joy Oglesby has a preschooler...
Cindy Kent Fort Lauderdale mother of three. Her kids span in ages from teenager to 20s.
Rafael Olmeda and his wife welcomed their first son in Feb. 2009, and he's helping raise two teenage stepdaughters.
Lois Solomonlives with her husband and three daughters.
Georgia East is the parent of a five-year-old girl, who came into the world weighing 1 pound, 13 ounces.
Brittany Wallman is the mother of Creed, 15, and Lily, 7, and is married to a journalist, Bob Norman. She covers Broward County government, which is filled with almost as much drama as the Norman household. Almost.
Chris Tiedje is the Social Media Coordinator and the father of a 7-year-old girl, and two boys ages 4 and 3.
Kyara Lomer Camarena has a 2-year-old son, Copelan, and a brand new baby.

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