Reporting Jason DeRusha
It’s one of those moments I’ll never forget.
Much like I remember watching ABC News from my parents’ suburban Chicago living room when the Tiananment Square uprising began; CNN when the first bombs started falling during the 1st Gulf War (“Can you hear me in Atlanta?”); and Charlie Gibson and Diane Sawyer when the airplane flew into the second World Trade Center tower, I’ll remember watching CBS as President Obama announced that we got him.
Osama bin Laden has been the face of evil in the United States for the past ten years. He’s been public enemy number one since I was 26. Most college and high school students can’t remember a time when terrorism wasn’t a real threat for the U.S.
And while I watched the simultaneously inspiring and disturbing sight outside the White House, as young people chanted “USA! USA!” I shared in that moment with my friends and neighbors. I didn’t have to be in a crowd to experience that moment, because I shared it with thousands of people on Facebook and Twitter.
Much has been written about how this was Twitter’s “CNN Moment”, the time it really crossed over from being a niche, to being everywhere. I don’t know that I agree with that.
But I do know that a Tweet from @PatiLucha, which read: “@DeRushaJ osama bin laden is DEAD!?” got me to stop watching TiVo, and start watching TV. I do know that I watched as people celebrated and asked questions and celebrated some more. I shared my first thought:
Can you imagine being the men and women who got the mission to go in and get Osama bin Laden? And they did it? Incredible.
I shared the moment on Facebook, and I also shared the moment with my wife as we sat in our basement, holding hands.
It’s a profound moment in our history. And it was profound to share it in such an uniquely 2011 way.