I am a bad american, maybe. I turned on NPR this morning and heard the news, that Al-Zarqawi had been killed. I got to work and opened up washingtonpost.com and was confronted with a close up picture of Zarqawi and yes, he did appear very dead.
My reaction is not happiness here, its something closer to disgust. I realize we are at war, and I more than realize that this man is a very very bad man. But I will never be comfortable with the celebration of death. Never. And I wonder why the rules of decency change so much. Why is it ok to splash photos of a dead man, even a horrible human being of a dead man, all over the paper with 24 point font screaming He's Dead! Really! We know its him!
I get it, I do. War is horrible. People get killed. Americans kill people. People kill Americans. Where do you draw the line between decency and exploitation? We are, through sensalization of his death, making this man a martyr, which is precisely what he would want.
I wouldn't want to see Hitler or Mussolini or Stalin or Jeffrey Dahmer or Timothy McVeigh laid out dead in front of me in some kind of sick showcase and I don't want to see this. Forgive me for not being overjoyed.