And that, ladies and gentlemen, is why I love America.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is why I love America.

My plans for yesterday were a bit different than what ended up happening. My internship gave me a free ticket to the Sweetlife music festival in Columbia, Maryland yesterday. I was assuming that by May 1st, the weather was going to be wonderful and I would be enjoying the concerts in a sundress and Ray-Bans. Well, change in plans there. It was rainy, under 50 degrees, and I could see my breath by then end of the festival. However, I still managed to enjoy the amazing performances by Crystal Castles, Lupe Fiasco, The Strokes, and Girl Talk. Confetti, balloons, and loud music are three of my favorite things in life, so it turned out to be a great evening. Oh, and I got my Tweet on the Jumbotron, so that was pretty cool too.

But really, that’s far from the most important part of my day. That came when I was on my way home from Sweetlife and stopped at a McDonald’s for a drink that cost less than the festival ordained price of $7. I was filling up my cup with a dysfunctional Sprite dispenser when a group of teenagers came in talking about Bin Laden. I thought it was weird because I hadn’t heard his name in the news in a while, but I quickly opened Twitter on my phone to see it flooded with tweets about his death.

Of course, my plans of resting myself after jumping up and down all day were immediately dismissed. We rushed back to our apartment and just as quickly turned around back out the door, glow necklaces still on, to hail a cab to the White House. We ran out of the Residential and Academic Facility to hail a cab, and finally managed to find an empty one in front of Union Station. He didn’t even have to ask where we were going, and even picked up an extra passenger along the way who he could clearly tell was headed to the same destination.

The area was so flooded with hastily parked cars and people running towards the White House that he had to drop us off a block away, but we were soon running with everyone else to join the mob of people surrounding the White House. It was probably the coolest thing I have ever been a part of. People were chanting “USA! USA!.” popping champagne, honking horns, singing the National Anthem, and climbing to the tops of lamp posts and trees shouting at the tops of their lungs.

The unity of the celebration was one of those few moments in which everyone is just proud to be an American, regardless of politics. Over the past four months, I have been in the heart of our country for the Egyptian uprise, the military action in Libya, the threat of a government shutdown, and now, the death of Osama Bin Laden. I’m not a fan of the president, but it truly didn’t matter last night. The kids with the Obama shirts were singing just as proudly as the kids with the Bush shirts, and everyone was celebrating together. Being in D.C. especially, it’s so easy to forget that there is something more than the politicians and their policies. No matter how cheesy it sounds, everyone forgot about that last night and just remembered how lucky we are to be Americans and how proud we should be that justice was finally served against the mastermind of the 9/11 attacks.

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