Seriously, I’m glad Osama bin Laden is dead.
Even though this may be the first time the death of another human being has made me truly and unapologetically happy.
But let’s keep things in perspective.
Just under 3,000 people died on 9/11/2001.
That same year, over 14 times that many people died in traffic collisions; 42,109 to be exact.
And in the years that followed, from 2001 to 2009, 369,629 people died on American streets. Roughly 100 times the total number of deaths that can be attributed to al Qaeda in all the attacks before and after 9/11.
Bin Laden’s actions led to wars, a massive world-wide man hunt, draconian security procedures and a near-constant state of fear, here and around the world.
Yet hundreds of millions of people in the U.S. get behind the wheel every day without a moment’s thought. And almost nothing is done to ensure that they return home safely.
Based on the latest statistics, 96 people will die on American streets today. They could be your neighbors, your co-workers, your family, your friends. They could be total strangers.
It could be you.
The attacks on 9/11 were devastating. I’m happy that bin Laden has finally been brought to justice. And I thank the men and women who sacrificed, and in some cases gave their lives, to make this possible.
But now maybe we can refocus on the carnage that takes place on our roads every day.
672 this week.
2976 this month. Just one less than the number of victims killed on 9/11.
This month. And every month.
That’s the terror we need to fight now.