1 / We’re getting ONE BIG QUESTION going again this week. Had planned on starting it again today. But One Big News story just hit. That leads me to this…
2 / I went to bed early last night. My wife was having a few of her girl friends over and I didn’t want to intrude, so I went to the back bedroom, read a little and fell asleep to the sound of rain outside my window. It was sweet and relaxing and provided some much needed rest. When I woke up this morning, I realized the world had changed overnight. Something significant happened. What was significant to me, though, was how I found out.
We’ve been getting the newspaper at the house the past few days because of some promotional offer the Arkansas Democrate Gazette is rolling out. They tried it once before on us, but we didn’t bite. I have to admit, though, it’s nice to eat my bowl of cereal with the paper in front of me. The computer’s just never felt the same. But we’re certainly not forking over big cash for that little joy.
As I grabbed the paper, I reached immediately for the sports section. What I found facing me on the front page of the news section, though, was too big to miss. A giant headline I’ll probably never forget sat staring right at me:
“U.S. kills bin Laden”
I can’t remember the last time I got the news, especially any sort of incredibly newsworthy news, from print media. While working through journalism school in college, I was face to face, over and over, with the fear that print was dead. We were presented with “new media”. Educated in web content and prepared for social networking. Print was already seen as a thing of the past. Slowly crawling towards it’s inevitable fate. One sad dinosaur. Yet it was print that brought me the news of the day, today.
I remember watching the news when September 11th happened. I remember watching the news when Barack Obama won the presidency. I remember watching the news when Sadaam Hussein was found.
In the future I’ll remember heading over to CNN.com for the major events of the day. But for now, I’ll remember picking up the paper when I learned bin Laden was killed. Maybe it was just coincidence. But picking up the paper, reading that enormous and straightforward headline, seemed to be the most appropriate and sober way to receive this grave news. And this news has certainly been filled with gravity, whether you’re feeling it or not. Which gets us to number three…
3 / I read page one of the paper with a strange solemnity. I felt no deep excitement. Certainly no joy. Just a sorrow that I couldn’t quite place. Perhaps it led me to think about all the pain this man had caused. I’m still not quite sure. But then I turned over the paper to page two. A picture of Americans celebrating bin Laden’s death met me. Whatever I’d felt stirring before became magnified immediately. This did not feel like a reason to celebrate. This didn’t seem to be a time to dance in the streets. This was certainly not a time for other countries to look at us with smiles on our faces as a man was killed. Even a man as filled with hate and evil as this man.
All day long, I realized I was not alone in my opinion. One of the beauties of our country is that we get a chance to say what we want, however we want to say it. I’m thankful for several different voices today that said something different. That rose up in a way I couldn’t have expected. If you’re interested in hearing a few of those, I’ve linked to them below. Peace.
From the newsier side of things:
The Huffington Post / “Celebrating a Death”
From the spiritual side of things:
Shaun Groves / “What is this faith?”
From the sports side of things:
Jeff MacGregor / “Endgame: The Arithmetic of Payback”
And we’ll see you next time with the answer to this ONE BIG QUESTION:
Where is your favorite spot,
what is your favorite activity to seek God?