You'd be hard-pressed to find news these days that doesn't make your blood boil, and this story is no different. Hell, it's worse than most. Tragedies that could’ve been potentially avoided are almost too common. Our cities are filled with spectres of forgotten roads, bridges that bleed rust, and buses that probably rolled down their assembly line when Nixon was in office. And people question why I'm angry? The negligence is astounding.
Let's not beat around the bush here: any crash, mishap, or unfortunate accident is the culmination of a multitude of failures. Systems, protocols, oversights – all marinated in a stew of political mishandling and blatant disregard for public safety. This story from the New York Times of these high school students, full of potential and buoyed by youthful innocence, meeting such a horrific fate, is a testament to the monumental failure that is our infrastructure.
The public transportation system in this country is stuck in the past, cared for by inefficient bureaucrats and controlled by politicians who have never set foot on a public bus, let alone know how they're maintained. Their sanctimonious speeches won't bring these kids back, and it's about time we held their feet to the fire.
Look at our education system: aren't we as a society supposed to nurture our youth? Aren't we supposed to create safe pathways for the next generation to tread upon? What is safe about a bus full of kids tumbling down the highway, oversized and underregulated, with nothing but minimum safety standards standing between life and the grim reaper blaring his hellish horn?
I know, I know, I'm just an old angry, gay conservative shouting at the sky and hoping someone up there hears me and magically sets things right. But we need more than hope. Our roads are in shambles, our bridges are on the brink of collapse, and our public transport, more often than not, doubles as a hearse-on-wheels. It's a tragic, vicious cycle of decay, death, denial – rinse repeat.
The painful part is the inevitability of it all. Two dead today, three tomorrow, a dozen the next, as we wait for the toll to be high enough for real changes. We wait, sacrificing our youth, our future at the altar of governmental apathy, political passivity and sheer, bloody incompetence.
It's reprehensible that these young lives were snuffed out in such a brutal, senseless fashion. Where is the outrage? Where is the demand for answers? Why aren’t we collectively pounding on the doors of our government institutions, demanding the accountability we've been promised time and time again? I’m both sorrowful and seething.
We, the American public, can no longer accept the current state of affairs. We must collectively say 'enough.' We must stand together, shoulder to shoulder, and demand that the protection and preservation of our youth, our future, comes before petty politicking, budget constraints, and the damned bureaucratic red-tape.
This is a call to arms, a rallying cry to fight for a future where the death toll doesn't keep climbing, where the path forward isn't paved with body bags. I don't want to read another headline about another bus, another crash, another list of casualties caught in the crossfire of systemic negligence.