Yes, Osama bin Laden was the worst guy in the world, but he and his companions were people nonetheless, and we're not supposed to be happy when people died. Yesterday, a bunch of soldiers storming into someone's house and killing him and some of his family. And people took to the street in joy. It can be a strange feeling. The Onion, as it frequently does, neatly summed up this awkward mood: "Violent Death Of Human Being Terrific News For Once." In a short New Yorker blog post, Amy Davidson was more contemplative on the same point: "I am not sad that Osama is dead; but I would be happier if he were in custody, and headed for trial," she wrote, pointing to her dismayed reaction a year ago when Eric Holder said the U.S. would only read Miranda rights "to the Corpse of Osama bin Laden."
Gawker's John Cook argues that the bloodlust that gripped the nation last night and today is warranted: "If there is ever a time when we should give ourselves license to surrender to our animal selves and dance on the grave of an enemy, this is it."
The Decemberists' Colin Maloy Tweeted a message earlier today that hit somewhere between the shaming of Sirota and the jubilation from the News: "He was a demagogue and mass-murderer. But rejoicing in or celebrating another person's violent death is fucked. Let's quietly move on."