Tonight’s Events: A Dialog

Alex: What does the death of one man mean?
Jared: Quit being deep.
Alex: It’s a sincere question. I don’t know the answer.
Jared: Symbolic vengeance.
Alex: I don’t have a cogent thought on that. I feel ambivalent.
Kristin: One less person to attack America.
Alex: That doesn’t sound like a well thought out or meaningful thing to say. I’m sorry, but that’s how I feel.
Kristin: Eh, I guess it’s not. It wasn’t meant to be.
Jennifer: It is a sense of closure and justice for the families of victims I suppose.. but I agree.. I think it’s only symbolic.. although they say he was still powerful for the organization in recruiting etc..
Erik: I think you can liken it to the death of the Nazi Leaders of the Third Reich, Closer to an unspeakable evil!
Alex: I’m not saying his death (I wont use the word murder, I guess) wasn’t justified. I just don’t feel comfortable with the enthusiasm for death. I guess I think we should be more sober and reserved about it.
Jennifer: I totally agree. I don’t think we should ever celebrate death. and I don’t think it’s justice becuase you still can’t replace the lives that are lost. And why didn’t we focus on capture not killing?
Jared: Were we all rational beings this would be a minor detail; but the emotional beast loves this shit.
Alex: Mine doesn’t. I feel queasy and disturbed by all the cheering in the background on the news. I don’t have the stomach for it. I’m sad these things need to transpire.
Jennifer: It does seem like we all sink to the same level doesn’t it? It is sad. And I do sort of wonder, what is so different about any war? In it, everyone kills innocents for their own beliefs.
Lionel: Ah, Alex…you know the answer to that question. The death of one person whose deeds were significant means a lot to the people who were effected by them. The medium of information and how people react to it is what is irritating you.
Alex: I don’t really know the answer to that question. Is vengeance healthy? Is a manic display appropriate? I’m not saying its wrong for people to be glad he’s gone. I just hope that people can be thoughtful rather than do the get drunk and party thing. It is cheep, immature and inappropriate. I think the situation and its meaning warrant contemplation.
Lionel: Of course…but I was referring to your original question. What does the death of one man mean? I’ve lamented and rejoiced in the deaths of many people for it meant that their sizable deeds upon society would have ended. I was just implying that waking up to every screen of information and everyone talking about the same thing can be annoying as heck. I’m stating that reacting to that tidal wave of information is separate to the true meaning of the one man’s death.
Alex: True, but I still don’t think it is so easy to parse out the meaning of one person’s demise. It isn’t something we should ever take as wholly good or wholly bad. In some sense, the reaction and the significance are one and the same. It is a bittersweet thing. I think it should inspire a somber and circumspect attitude, rather than a jubilant one.
Lionel: Meaning is subjective thus people act differently. I have grown to accept that. I have simply figured out what are the borders between reaction and (subjective) significance and how information systems magnify or distort those borders. …Oh, and in some cultures, death is celebrated by a party. Personally, I’m good with either.
Alex: You’re right I think, and I only claim to speak for my own feelings on the matter (although I think the context you’re talking about for the celebration of a death is somewhat different than what we’re talking about here). I guess I just wish that people weren’t so rash and gave things the thought they deserved rather than act with mob mentality. It is a subjective thing, and I feel that people should take the time to actually process it themselves.

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