Historian: Celebrating someone's death "distasteful," but "I'm not mourning bin Laden's passing"Historians in the News
Spontaneous celebrations of pride, where people pour into the streets to embrace the flag and each other, have mostly become the stuff of sports victories or Twitter-fomented revolutions in the Middle East.
For American celebrations with any equivalence to what resulted from the news of the death of Osama bin Laden, you have to go back to 1945, to V-E and V-J days....
The comparison is inexact because the comparisons only go so far. Sept. 11 may well have been this generation's Pearl Harbor, but bin Laden killed thousands while Germany and Japan killed millions.
But those who both made and study history recognize the parallels. The sudden, entirely welcome demise of bin Laden is a sort of closure signifying that America remains a defining agent in the game.
"It's fairly distasteful to celebrate death," says Christopher Strain, a professor of history and American studies at the Honors College of Florida Atlantic University in Jupiter. "But I'm not mourning bin Laden's passing, and I certainly understand the celebrations. I think there's a kind of catharsis. People feel relief; perhaps some free-floating anxiety and angst will subside a little bit....
comments powered by Disqus
- Rubio Surges Into Second In New Hampshire
- Branstad Says Cruz Ran ‘Unethical’ Campaign
- Christie Highlights Santorum’s Endorsement of Rubio
- Portman Comes Out Against Trade Deal
- Megyn Kelly Gets a Book Deal
- A Big List of the Bad Things Clinton Has Done
- An Unambiguous Sign Sanders Won Last Night’s Debate
- Still Friends at the End
- Quote of the Day
- Trump Still Leads as Clinton Slips
- Clinton Can’t Shake Image as Wall Street’s Friend
- Maddow Doesn’t See Sanders Winning
- Why Does the Media Still Shield Chelsea Clinton?
- Bush Jokes His Mother May Have Abused Him
- Rubio Closes the Gap in New Hampshire
- Transcribed Document: Soviet Politburo Discussed CIA Billion Dollar Spy Adolf Tolkachev
- Pentagon withholds Iraq War photos showing detainee abuse
- These Rebels Have Amassed A Library From Syria’s Ruins
- Was 1916 fire at Canadian Parliament set by German saboteur?
- United Nations Calls On U.S. To Pay African Americans Reparations For Slavery
- Juan Cole says America’s inclination to turn to the military started with Manifest Destiny
- History Jobs Drop
- Paul Krugman gives credence to Robert J. Gordon's pessimism about American economic growth
- Harvard President Drew Faust Condemns Free Tuition Proposal from Outsider Overseers Ticket
- Andrew Roberts says Trump is the Mussolini of America with double the vulgarity