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Building Bridges
Author: BobR    Date: 04/03/2024 13:26:11

As you readers likely already know, we were out of town over the weekend, getting home last night after what seemed like a very long drive. Traffic, rain, and a dog that just would not settle down combined to make the miles creep by slowly.

Being out of town and cocooned in a non-political world, I was a bit unplugged from the non-stop barrage of election-year news. The major news story that hit close to home (literally and figuratively) is the ongoing work on the collapsed Francis Scott Key bridge.

It's been about a week since the bridge was struck by an out-of-control cargo ship, and destroyed like a Tinker-Toy structure after a cat attack. It's stoked conversations on shipping in general, and the state of our infrastructure.

We all know what happened - As the ship was being guided out of the harbor by a Baltimore-based harbor pilot, there was a major electrical failure on board the container ship, which caused the engines to fail, and loss of control. Despite trying to restart the engines, as well as drop anchor on the port side, the ship directly struck a main bridge support. Due to the design of the 50 year old bridge, the loss of one support caused most of the bridge to collapse.

A "mayday" sent out by the pilot allowed the police time to block traffic, saving countless lives. Still, there were 8 workers on the bridge (mostly immigrants), and they were victims in the collapse. Two survived (one of whom is in critical condition); the others were killed. Two bodies have been recovered; the remaining four are amongst the wreckage, and it's not safe to get them out yet.

Naturally, there is a "certain percentage" of our populace that doesn't believe the "official story". They think it was done on purpose, because China, blah, blah, blah. Others are blaming "DEI":
Whether it’s because the Black mayor of Baltimore is “DEI”, the U.S. secretary of transportation supposedly qualifies, or the company managing the massive cargo ship involved in the crash simply has a DEI page on its website, a legion of gimlet-eyed keyboard sleuths all arrived at the same conclusion—that diversity initiatives are to blame for the crash. (One even quickly posted an AI-generated image of DEI causing the accident.) It’s just the latest symptom of an alarming trend, where DEI serves as an all-purpose scapegoat for anything that goes wrong in America. It’s such a common refrain, in fact, it has now become utterly predictable in every tragedy or near-disaster—and it seems to be arriving faster and faster.

The disarray we are seeing in Congress is a direct result of this kind of stupidity. A small minority of Republicans - inspired by the mean stupid rhetoric of the former president - is (likely purposefully) preventing the necessary consensus and compromise needed to get work done. The blaming of the bridge destruction on DEI or immigration is an example of this mindset outside of Congress.

We're never going to be able to build (or rebuild) bridges if we can't even agree on facts.

1 comments (Latest Comment: 04/03/2024 14:39:27 by Will_in_Ca)
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