I went to bed late last night breathing a sigh of relief after hearing the totally unexpected news that 12 of the 13 men in that West Virginia coal mine had been found alive. I called it quits after feeling my stomach churn while watching Geraldo and other reporters running around in the cheering crowd of families shoving microphones and cameras in people's faces wanting to know how they felt. My response would have been something along the lines of, "How the bloody hell do you think I feel?" but I have a bit of a belligerent streak.
I thought the responses of the older folk seemed strangely reserved as if they really weren't sure of what they heard but wanted to put on a good show for the camera. I went to bed thanking God for the lives of those miners.
This morning I uttered a cure in my bed as I heard on the radio that 12 had actually died and only 1 still clung to life. I wondered if the group had banded together to ensure the survival of the youngest among them. I wondered if those I'd seen on television last night, ex-miners and the sons and daughters of coal miners who'd been through mine accidents before, who knew the risks involved with working in the mines better than any of the talking heads on television, I wondered if perhaps they knew deep down in some place where they did not want to look that their loved ones had perished. I wonder now if anyone will ever know what actually happened in that mine.
There is a saying that a lie can run around the world while the truth is still putting its trousers on. With the wonderful world of near instant communications that saying is more true now than ever. The Black Informant comments on this very aspect of this tragedy.
Tim Blair has an extensive round up of news on the mine accident and the subsequent debacle.