Thursday, August 02, 2007

Why do bridges collapse?


That is the big question today in Minneapolis. Wy did the bridge collapse?

Some people are answering the question with comments about the structural integrity of the bridge. It's 50 of 120 rating strikes fear into the hearts of people, especially when they hear a large percentage of bridges get similar ratings. They fear every bridge is going to collapse even though they have no idea what a rating of 50 means. Words like "deficient" conjure up pictures of crumbling structures.

Other people are answering the WHY question politically, blaming Bush for not funding bridges enough. I am proud to see that Norma Coleman (R-Senator), Amy Klobuchar (D-Senator), Ralph Ellison (D-Rep), and Tim Pawlenty (R-Governor) are all Minnesotans today. Others, however, are already finding a way to blame politicians, namely the president for this.

There are a few coming up with theological answers for this. I am not aware of any theology of bridges that can be derived from scripture, but that does not seem to stop people from making them up. There are going to be some, no doubt, who blame God or wonder where God was. Didn't God know the bridge was going to fall? Could God ahve held it off until 3 AM, when very few people are dirving? There will be lots of God questions here - more blaming of God than anything else. These questions that of course cannot be answered by people will be evidence for doubters to remain convinced of their doubt.

There will be an investigation and that investigation will provide evidence. That evidence will provide approximate answers. Those approximate answers will be politicized at some point. I do have hope, however, that Minnesotans can resist the temptation to blame. We all know that the government is going to throw a bunch of money at this thing and we Twin Citians are going to get us a pretty nice bridge when it is all said and done.

I can't explain why this happened. I tend to think that government is not perfect, structures age and strain, and that God has allowed freedom way beyond what makes sense to humanity. And yet, God does not leave just because freedom has been given. God is near.

1 comment:

Joe James said...

I am just glad to know that you or Gail or your kids were not on the bridge!!!!

I thought of you guys when I first heard the news last night.

I like the post BTW. I think bridges collapse, because men built them. And we blame politicians, because we trust in them to keep the bridges we built from collapsing.

If we didn't trust politicians for salvation then we wouldn't blame them for failing to do so.

There's my soapbox!

Glad your okay.