A bad man is dead...
The boys were still awake, as they usually are at 7:20, when I first saw the news on Twitter suggesting that Osama bin Laden had been killed by the U.S. military. I turned on the news, because I couldn't imagine missing this announcement. So I had to tell the boys (who were really more focused on their dinner) what was happening; and all I could say was, "the president is announcing that he killed a very bad man. He ordered attacks on the U.S. -- thousands of Americans were killed," and, "this is what started the war Daddy is fighting." The war is not over. This does not affect his homecoming, and probably won't curtail future deployments.
I was glad, then, when I turned on the radio later, turned my computer on, to see the celebrations (and they'd fallen asleep already when a neighbor set off fireworks). I don't like the idea of celebrating death, even of a very bad man -- however you feel about the news, I suspect parents have common feelings about that. And if any of our children were alive during the attacks on 9/11 (of the urbanMamas founders, only one, Olivia, already had a child in 2001), it's likely they were too young to understand any of it.
Honestly, I think I'll try to shelter my kids from the photos of celebrations and the related news. We'll just leave with the title of my post: a bad man is dead. And they can learn more once they hit high school and study recent U.S. history. There are lots of tragedies I feel I shouldn't keep from my children; knowing that bad things happen as part of this complex rich life is something we've accepted, more or less. Knowing that people celebrate someone's death is just too nuanced for them; or maybe it's just too nuanced and conflicted for me to explain. How do you feel about this news?