Amazon Residents react to the death of Osama bin Laden

Amazon residents interviewed on Tuesday were more than willing to share their thoughts on the death of Osama bin Laden.

By Kailee Pence

Amazon Blog Reporter

EUGENE , Ore. — Three residents of Eugene’s Amazon neighborhood, interviewed by Reporting 1 students, had mixed feelings about the death of Osama bin Laden.

On Tuesday morning, brief interviews with Greg Packebush, Jessica Guillen and Brenda were conducted for the Reporting 1 blog. The residents were asked about their reaction to the news that Special Forces had killed bin Laden on Sunday in Pakistan. They were also asked about how they found out and their reactions to the celebrations in Washington D.C. and elsewhere.

Suspicions Grow

Packebush, a frequent customer at The Beanery on Hilyard Street, had thought a lot about the issue in the last two days. “First of all my biggest fear about it is, it’s possibly a pawn in the game to use it to go to war with Pakistan possibly, or something like that because they were making a big deal about how there were military bases located next to his compound,” he said.

He feels skeptical about the recent news because he has heard rumors that suggest bin Laden has been dead for 10 years and “on ice” until the government had a good time to bring him out. “I don’t think what actually they said happened, happened at all,” he said.

When the media released of a photo of bin Laden’s body that was confirmed fake, his suspicions increased. “It’s all a game, and I think we’re getting played,” he said.

Respect the Dead

At the local Burrito Amigos where Guillen works, she said she learned about the death of bin Laden on Facebook. Her friends were posting status updates about the death and the celebrations. Guillen was surprised when her friends started posting pictures of bin Laden and said, “Be respectful. The dead need to be left alone, even thought they were bad people, what happened, happened. There’s nothing we can do.”

She said, “It was time for him to be caught but probably not to be killed. That just brings more problems to everything. It brings more war and more soldiers from the U.S. being killed.”

Brenda, a shopper at the Albertsons on 30th Avenue, shared similar feelings. She thought that the death of bin Laden was inevitably going to happen, but the celebrations made America look bad.

“I don’t think that people celebrating his death and the death of the woman he hid behind is really all that good. It just says poor things for Americans that were celebrating the death of another human being,” she said.

Although Brenda knew bin Laden’s role in the terrorist attacks on America, she said, “I think it’s extremely poor taste. I realize that he was one of the catalysts for 9/11, but he wasn’t the only player, he wasn’t the only one. It’s like them celebrating a hanging of one of our military men or women.”

The three residents interviewed in the Amazon neighborhood shared a mixture of emotions and thoughts about the recent death. All expressed an underlying feeling of uncertainty and anxiety as they wait to see what will follow in the upcoming months.

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