Sunday, November 9, 2008

Leap of faith

The sound of sirens in the distance pierced my early morning reverie one day last week while I waited at the bus stop for my transport to the office.

Newly conditioned to attend to the moment, I noticed the scene as the sirens came closer and closer. Cars on all sides came to a halt and in moments, two police cars and an ambulance barrelled through the usually busy intersection.

As traffic resumed I thought about the leap of faith the drivers of those speeding, screaming vehicles must make every time they set their course for emergencies. Will drivers of the cars on the road hear the sirens and respond? Are they even aware of the rules that call for them to pull over and stop? Or in their haste to solve someone else's crisis, will those who drive emergency vehicles become victims of one themselves?

Of course all turned out as it should at this intersection that morning, as it almost always does. So the police and ambulance drivers are justified in the faith they place in others on the road to know and abide by the rules.

Today, as I contemplate the close of an amazing week in our country's history, I think about the leap of faith we the people all take every four years when we choose a president, and many times in between when we vote for a host of other local, state and national leaders. Did we study the issues sufficiently to make informed choices? Did the candidates represent themselves honestly? They can't possibly keep all the promises they make in the course of a campaign -- but will they be able to do what's necessary to take action on those that matter the most?

The sirens are screaming for our economy, for energy independence, health care, national security and a host of social and policy issues. There's a fair possibility some or all will come crashing together in the intersection, with consequences I prefer not to ponder.

But today, I am feeling good about the leap of faith we collectively took this week, and hopeful our leaders can navigate the road ahead with the fewest fender-benders possible.

1 comment:

Bluestem said...

My sophomores are studying vocabulary relating to Greek mythology, and one student presented the historical reference for "siren" this morning. You are beyond literate, so you won't have to be reminded of the half-bird females with enchanting, hypnotic songs which led ships to crash on the rocks. Your description of modern sirens and our reaction --- to run our vehicles aground against the nearest curb --- allowed me to make the analogy even more clear to the class. Thanks for your visual!!!