Monday, September 05, 2005

Up or Down

The state promises to lift us up,
when we are down,
but generally it lets us down,
and not gently.

When crises strike, the politicians fly in to assess the damage. They go on television and promise to do whatever needs to be done. But when all is said and done, it takes more than they they can do.
Many of the homeless will be sheltered by families and friends.

Real support will come from churches and community groups.
Much of the clean-up will be done by ordinary people getting stuck in.
Much of the rebuilding will be done by the construction industry.
Most of the cost will be borne by insurance companies.

Of course, the politicians will be there when a crowd gathers and the television cameras roll.
The state builds itself up,
but it lets the people down.

In New Orleans it did not just let the people down,
it let the water flow down
into the city.
The state could not even protect the people from crime and violence.

The state will restore the levees,
too late,
but most people will restore their own lives with help from family and friends.

When God picks us up,
he does not let us down.


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