Is it right to cheer?

3 May

It was reported on the news yesterday that the self-credited mastermind of the 2001 September 11 terrorism attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon in America, Osama Bin Laden, was killed by the American military.

Without a doubt, anyone responsible for crimes against humanity such as Bin Laden was should be brought to justice.

But I’m not sure I agree that the celebrations and cheering across America that was shown on the TV news yesterday is appropriate.

A crowd in Washington DC cheered the news that Osama Bin Laden was killed in a firefight with the U.S. military.

The Americans crowds that were shown on TV were chanting “USA! USA! USA!” and singing pro-America songs such as the American National Anthem.

It reminded me of the images of the reaction in some Middle Eastern countries about ten years ago after the WTC attacks on America.
There were some anti-American crowds in some countries who were cheering America’s loss.
It was quite offensive to see!

I certainly wouldn’t compare a villain such as Bin Laden to the innocent lives lost on 2001 September 11th…but seeing Americans cheering may fuel “anti-American” feelings in some countries.

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29 Responses to “Is it right to cheer?”

  1. tokyo5 May 3, 2011 at 12:24 am #

    By the way, today is a Japanese holiday (the first in the three consecutive holidays from May 3-5 in Japan collectively known as “Golden Week”).

    Today is 「憲法記念日」 (“Constitution Day”). Today is 64th anniversary of the the day the post-WWII Japanese constitution went into effect.

    • bartman905 May 3, 2011 at 6:31 am #

      Golden Week FTW! Let’s cheer for Golden Week instead then, that’s certainly something to be happy about :-). I already miss Golden Week.

      • tokyo5 May 3, 2011 at 11:24 am #

        Yeah, Japan has many holidays…and “Golden Week”, with four holidays in a single week, is particularly nice.

        By the way, were there cheering crowds in Canada about the news of Bin Laden’s death?

    • bartman905 May 5, 2011 at 6:41 am #

      Really no outward (ie. crowded) cheering. Also, there was a Canadian Federal election the next day …

      • tokyo5 May 5, 2011 at 11:29 am #

        >Canadian Federal election

        For the Prime Minister office? Was a new Prime Minister elected? (Sorry, I don’t keep up with Canadian politics.)

  2. Earnest Mercer May 3, 2011 at 1:18 am #

    I agree. I posted a similar comment on Facebook. Some of TV’s talking heads acted like idiots. The reactions of many in the streets and on TV revealed that we really aren’t as civilized as we pretend to be.

    • tokyo5 May 3, 2011 at 11:10 am #

      >The reactions of many in the streets

      Yeah, it was shocking to see that on TV. Maybe because I’ve been living in Tokyo for most I’ve of my life the Japanese style reaction seems more natural to me.

  3. labougeotte May 3, 2011 at 1:25 am #

    I had the same reaction watching it on TV here in Japan.

    • tokyo5 May 3, 2011 at 11:11 am #

      You’ve just arrived in Japan recently, haven’t you?

      Are you experiencing any culture shock?

      • labougeotte May 3, 2011 at 12:57 pm #

        Yes, today is my second day! I think I’m experiencing culture fascination so far, but we’ll see if my feelings change.

      • tokyo5 May 3, 2011 at 11:40 pm #

        Japan is quite different from America.
        I experienced culture shock when I first arrived here in 1990. But I’ve been here most of my life now and I very rarely travel overseas—so I’ve become more used to Japan than America now.

        What part of America are you from?

  4. musings May 3, 2011 at 1:26 am #

    Wow! You wrote exactly what I was planning to write once I got my thoughts more in gear. I was very uncomfortable with what I was seeing on TV. That kind of celebration isn’t going on everywhere, of course. My husband saw one reaction and he said, “This isn’t a football game, you know. We should show some dignity.”

    • tokyo5 May 3, 2011 at 11:13 am #

      >You wrote exactly what I was planning to write

      Well, I hope you still write a post. I’d like to read it.

      >That kind of celebration isn’t going on everywhere

      But since it’s being shown in the news around the world, it’s the image everyone has of America’s reaction.

  5. nihongozuki May 3, 2011 at 3:37 am #

    We could look on it in this way: “Anyone who is among the living has hope — even a live dog is better off than a dead lion!”(Ecclesiastes 9:4). Osama Bin Laden has lost his chance to turn away from his evil deeds. God weeps of him because He lost him for eternity. Shouldn’t we do the same?…

    • tokyo5 May 3, 2011 at 11:17 am #

      I don’t subscribe to any religion…I think I understand what you’re trying to say though.
      But, although I wouldn’t cheer Bin Laden’s death, I wouldn’t “weep” over it either.

  6. Al Case May 3, 2011 at 4:44 am #

    The cheering you see on TV is a bunch of college kids looking for any excuse to party. The vast majority of Americans are not taking to the streets to cheer. It’s too bad the media makes things (and people) look more stupid than they really are.

    • tokyo5 May 3, 2011 at 11:20 am #

      >The vast majority of Americans are not taking to the streets to cheer.

      That’s good. But the news showed huge crowds in many cities around America.

      You used to live in Japan, didn’t you? So I guess you know that it would be hard to imagine anyone reacting like that here…much less a crowd of people.

  7. tornadoes28 May 3, 2011 at 8:19 am #

    9/11 affected people in deep ways including me. I will never forget that morning. Ever. I too feel like cheering. Yes, it may seem odd like cheering for a sports team but it is people cheering for their country and I see nothing wrong with that.

    • tokyo5 May 3, 2011 at 11:51 am #

      >people cheering for their country and I see nothing wrong with that.

      Don’t you think it’s quite similar to the images of the anti-America crowds in some countries who cheered the “September 11th” attacks?

  8. RattRocker May 3, 2011 at 9:11 am #

    Honestly, I was too young to feel shocked at 9/11 when it happened, but I know that it was horrible and when I watched the news last night and saw this, I didn’t know what to think, I am not a person to cheer when anyone dies. I did feel a sort of not necessarily pride, but an achievement of some sort, knowing that he has finally been brought to justice. I personally feel the same with you that it can be offensive to some countries, I feel that it gives America a bad image, almost like a bunch of savages or tricky happy soldiers. I have mixed feelings on the whole situation.

    • RattRocker May 3, 2011 at 9:15 am #

      Also, I felt that the part where Hilary speeks in her speech here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2usrnPcC-18 about about the US being invincible and some other stuff really is just asking for the US to be attacked. I feel that she went a little over the top with her nationalistic feelings here.

      • tokyo5 May 3, 2011 at 11:47 am #

        Hilary (Clinton)…speech…about the US being invincible

        I just watched it. I suppose you’re referring to her line where she said that America “won’t be defeated”.

        Yeah, that could be construed as a challenge by some groups, I suppose.
        I can’t imagine a politician in Japan saying such a thing.

    • tokyo5 May 3, 2011 at 11:43 am #

      >I was too young to feel shocked at 9/11 when it happened

      Yeah, you’re about the same age as my kids and they were very young in 2001 too.
      But those of us who were old enough back then were extremely shocked.

      >I am not a person to cheer when anyone dies.

      I would imagine that most people wouldn’t celebrate such a thing.

      >it can be offensive to some countries, I feel that it gives America a bad image

      I feel that that “USA! USA! USA!” chant is a bit crass at sporting events such as the Olympics…but much more so after a gun-firefight.

      • RattRocker May 3, 2011 at 12:00 pm #

        The USA chanting gives me the impression that the US is full of a bunch of obnoxious people, but unlike a sporting event, doing that over a murder doesn’t feel right at all to me. But then again killing 3000 innocent people, destroying the world trade center, and part of the pentagon is something that cannot be taken lightly, like I said, I have mixed emotions on the whole thing.

      • tokyo5 May 3, 2011 at 11:36 pm #

        >a murder

        Osama Bin Laden was killed in combat, not “murdered”.

        >then again killing 3000 innocent people, destroying the world trade center, and part of the pentagon is something that cannot be taken lightly

        Of course not. But I still think the cheering celebrations aren’t right.

  9. cuteandcurls May 22, 2011 at 12:39 am #

    When I saw the news of Bin Laden’s death, all I can say is justice has been served and may this end all terrorist attacks and tainting the name of religion. Although I dont rejoice over this as I just find its a conspiracy for the lack of proof that he is dead although its been confirmed but its still very unconvincing however when I saw the cheering celebrations, I just felt it is not right to do so. Sure its a closure to 9/11 to many but it’s just not right as we all dont know the repercussions to that… anyway im just saying my point of view and not debating :)

    • tokyo5 May 22, 2011 at 1:27 am #

      >a closure to 9/11 to many

      After the news here showed the images of people in America cheering the death of Osama Bin Laden, I saw a TV interview with the family of some of the Japanese people who died in the World Trade Center attacks in NYC on 2001 September 11th…and they didn’t feel comfortable seeing the cheering in the streets of America either.

      • cuteandcurls May 22, 2011 at 7:36 pm #

        Who would? :-( I dont feel comfortable myself watching that, its just the sort that would, you know, trigger anything :(

      • tokyo5 May 22, 2011 at 11:03 pm #

        >the sort that would…trigger anything

        Yes, that’s possible. And that’s not the only reason that cheering over this is wrong.

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