Osama bin Laden's Death Changes Everything - and Nothing - Southern Maryland Headline News

Osama bin Laden's Death Changes Everything - and Nothing

Commentary by Ron Miller

Ron MillerOsama bin Laden's death this week had a global impact, but there are people who live in southern Maryland that were particularly affected by the news. I can't walk the North Beach boardwalk without pausing to pay my respects at the benches dedicated to victims of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attack, masterminded by the man whose body is now at the bottom of the sea.

Many of us knew people who died in the World Trade Center towers or the Pentagon, or on the planes that hit the towers, the Pentagon, or crashed in Shanksville, Pennsylvania.

Many of the families of those who perished in the 9/11 attack on the Pentagon, or the survivors of that attack and their families, live here in southern Maryland.

All have seen justice done. This event changes everything, even though it doesn't bring back the loved ones who were lost. We are, after ten long years, finally in a post-bin Laden world.

I commend the men who conducted the operation after months of training and preparation, the men and women whose hard work behind the scenes collected and validated the intelligence that led them to the compound, the national security team that President Obama assembled to carry out this mission, and the President himself for giving them the authority they needed to carry it out successfully.

Regrettably, what hasn't changed is the national mood, which is pretty sour right now. As Thomas Paine once said, "These are the times that try men's souls," and while he wrote those words on the eve of our nation's birth, they are certainly relevant today.

The euphoria over bin Laden's death, and the unity that news brought about, was brief compared to the post-9/11 unanimity that had me fooled into thinking people in Washington, DC actually worked toward a common purpose.

Already, people are polarized over what this means for the upcoming 2012 presidential elections. President Obama got a nine-point bump in the polls because of bin Laden's death, and some are even declaring him invincible going into the next campaign season.

I would remind these irrationally exuberant celebrants, however, that President George H.W. Bush had approval ratings in the high 80th - low 90th percentile in the aftermath of the Gulf War, and many people then were saying the same things about his invincibility in 1992 that they're saying now about President Obama. There was no clear front-runner among the Democrats, similar to the GOP field today.

We all know what happened. Between Bill "It's the economy, stupid!" Clinton and Ross "Giant sucking sound" Perot, Bush became a one-term president. This temporary poll boost will mean nothing by the time the campaign commences, especially given the typical attention deficit in our culture.

One other thing to point out; the economy is still tanked, and his solutions of more spending and higher taxes are still bad ideas. Class warfare and racial polarization are still the wrong paths to keeping power. Everything has changed - and nothing has changed.

Ron Miller of Huntingtown, Maryland is a conservative writer and commentator, and author of SELLOUT: Musings From Uncle Tom’s Porch. He is the president of Regular Folks United, which promotes and defends individual liberty, and president of the Frederick Douglass Foundation of Maryland, the state chapter of the nation’s preeminent organization of Christian black Republicans. The nine-year plus veteran of the U.S. Air Force and married father of three writes columns for numerous online sites and print publications, and his own website, TeamRonMiller.com. Join him on Facebook andTwitter.

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