Agitated (or, Notes from the Daughter of a Birther)

May 2, 2011

I have a cousin, with whom I am not close.  He’s in his early 30s, has 2 young kids.

He made a comment today, following the Bin Laden news.  My assumption was that he was tongue-in-cheek: “Mr. Obama, nice distraction, most people don’t even remember your birth certificate case is today ….”

I mean, that’s kinda funny.  When think about how few people have given the birth certificate controversy even the tiniest corner of their minds, right?  Maybe he meant it for reals, but my assumption was — tongue-in-cheek.


I went out with work friends last night.  We had a really nice time, talking about BigLaw, and women in the workplace, and next steps.  We played mah jongg.  I won both hands.  We ate yummy soup, and cheese, and bread.  We drank less wine than usual.  I got home right around 10:30.  Lemon was still up, but Mouse was long dead-to-the-world, after her 20 mile walk (peppered with sprints, I heard today).  I was tired.  I was chatting with WD and checked my phone before heading to bed.  “Obama due to make an announcement at 10:30!”

I don’t really know what it says about me that my brain thought, “a meteor is going to hit the earth!” and “maybe a nuclear warhead is on its way!”  (Actually, I think I know what it says about me:  I read and watch too many dystopias.  I spend too much time thinking about how to survive an end-of-the-world tidal wave.)

We turned on the t.v. to find that it was expected that Obama would announce that Bin Laden was dead.

It seamed vague at first.  I spent at least 15 minutes thinking Bin Laden died of cancer.

I truly don’t know what it says about me that most of my thoughts throughout the next 2 hours had to do with political strategy. And a little bit of how Georgie had better been feeling embarrassed. Actually, there was more “so there!” toward Georgie than there was anything else.  (I was very unhappy with him as my president.)

Lemon was watching with us for a while.  It was very interesting to hear her pattering about her memories of 9/11.  How she didn’t “get it” at the time.  She was not yet 5, and more concerned with the fact that her favorite t.v. show wasn’t on, and she wasn’t able to go to preschool that day.  She was trying to say it wasn’t a big deal to her, but yet, at the same time, the details she remembered about the day made it clear that it was very much imprinted on her brain.


I’m not a blood-thirsty person.  I haven’t been clamoring for Bin Laden’s death.  I had some sense that him on the run did as much to protect us from him as would him being captured and/or dead.  I also have a very “pollyanna” approach to terrorism.  I do not live in fear of it.  I will never see it as the rule, and always see it as a very rare exception (and, indeed, it is).  But I wasn’t abhorred by Bin Laden’s death last night.

I felt pretty neutral.

I was surprised when my very right-wing, Sarah Palin sympathizing, Obama-distrusting mother got on line at 11:30 or so and said she was NOT celebrating the news.  (In contrast, my father’s reaction was complete celebration.  In fact, he didn’t even work a full day, because he wanted to watch the “good news” on television.)  I didn’t explore her sentiments, though, because it was late.  And I needed to sleep.

Today, to my surprise, mom posted something on Facebook in support of the more peaceful reactions to the day, an MLK, Jr., quote, even:

I mourn the loss of thousands of precious lives, but I will not rejoice in the death of one, not even an enemy.  Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars.  Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light cannot do that.  Hate cannot drive out hate:  only love can do that.

I agree.

I had a moment of thinking that maybe Mom is breaking away from dad, and his “string ’em up by the balls!” way of thinking. [You must read that quote with a very gruff voice.]

Until tonight.  Back to my cousin’s post.  The whole “nice distraction” stuff (see above).

My mom responded:  “exactly … cold blooded murder for his own purpose …”

Look.  Like I said, I’m not out for blood.  But to call the military operation against Osama Bin Laden — the last in a series of many orchestrated by two administrations — “cold blooded murder”?  Really?

I’m just at a loss.

I’m also thinking about perusing some right-wing reaction to the news.  Is this something she picked up from Fox?  Or is it her own brand of wacked-out thinking?  If someone has heard this cockamamey sort of thing elsewhere, please let me know.  It might make me feel better.



  1. Ever since I ditched my family on Facebook, it’s been so much more enjoyable. Just saying. 🙂

  2. My wackadoo tea party cousin was bringing up the movie Wag the Dog. She is of the “this is all a hoax, where’s the body” stripe. I hadn’t heard this one, though.

  3. Yeah, I have parents just like that, one of whom made an identical comment about the birth certificate. It must have been on Fox!

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 )

Google photo

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

Twitter picture

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

Facebook photo

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

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: