Osama Bin Laden is Dead

Never in my life have I experienced such a tangible wave of collective consciousness.

I took a very brief break from my WIP to check twitter, and the news that President Obama was about to address the nation was on everyone’s proverbial lips. Thankful that I also follow NBC News, I only had to wait moments before they tweeted.

Yes, it’s not a rumor.  The President will address the nation at any minute… but what will he say? Rumors ran rampant. I quipped that perhaps President Obama was simply using his “major announcement” to interrupt Celebrity Apprentice and show Donald Trump who the real boss is!

I entered the stream of consciousness with hundreds of others, mostly Americans, but many from around the world. It was very odd to see the occasional tweet from someone who hadn’t heard the news yet. The news correspondents on the TV and live stream shared the same frustration “He’s not speaking 4 minutes from now, it will be 9 minutes from now…” and the time continues to be pushed back.

It’s after 11pm now on the east coast.  

More rumors surfaced, and were then confirmed by reliable news sources. “Osama Bin Laden is Dead” echoed virtually along with “The US has his body.” Twitter immediately lit up with ponderings and opinions, from those saying “But does this really change anything?” to those cheering and praising our armed forces.

Other rumors said that he was killed a week ago, but they were seeking DNA confirmation that it really was him. I applaud that, if it turns out to be true. This is something we really need to be sure of before it is announced to the world. This is a moment I will remember my whole life, just as I remember where I was when the Challenger and then later the Discovery exploded, and, as we all, where I was on 9-11.

During none of those events did I have anything resembling the lightning speed and collective consciousness of social media. But the collective consciousness is not in accord… there are those who are cheering the death of the “Unrepentant Mass Murderer”, and others who insist that cheering at a death, any death, is wrong. People are joking. People are praising God. People are cynical.

It is thirteen minutes after 11pm on the east coast, and still we wait. Talking heads on the news are filling the time. At any second, one of them is going to be interrupted by the announcement “Here is the President!” It’s like musical chairs; who is going to be the one who doesn’t get to finish their sentence?

I’ve copied and pasted cute or inspiring facebook statuses many times. But never have I seen every friend’s status on my recent newsfeed all saying the same thing. But it vacillates… friends in Australia are awake, but apparently haven’t heard, or at least they aren’t commenting yet.

Twitter is still abuzz.  

Emma tweets:

I buried my solider, my heart with him and I still see no reason to celebrate anyone’s death in this war or any other. Goodnight Twitter.

Anderson Cooper tweets:

My thoughts right now are with all those lost on 9-11, and all those killed by his followers in the years since.
Several people are referencing former President George W. Bush’s “Mission Accomplished” announcement 8 years ago.
Dee Tweets:
Maybe the Prez is making us wait ANOTHER 10 years for announcement?
Patrick, who is barely old enough to remember 9-11 has as his facebook status:
Goodbye Osama. We aren’t gonna miss you one damn bit.
We’re getting all kinds of background information now, and I appreciate that NBC, my own choice tonight for instant news, isn’t indulging in speculation. Bryan Williams is saying the announcement is “within minutes” now.
Who will win musical chairs?
Another tweet has been retweeted so many times it’s hard to tell where it started:
Here’s to hoping he didn’t make any horcruxes… #BinLaden
If you didn’t get the Harry Potter reference, I’m afraid I don’t have time to explain it right now. It’s 11:35 and President Obama just said “Good Evening.”


About AmyBeth Inverness

A writer by birth, a redhead by choice.
This entry was posted in Real Science and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.