Before moving to the inner city of Cleveland, we lived in Bluffton, Ohio. I used to take the kids to watch the Bluffton University Baseball Team. Some of this year’s team members died today in a tremendously tragic bus accident in Atlanta. And it must be horrific for everyone involved. But as tragic as this one accident is, every 13 seconds someone is killed on American highways. That translates to 33,000 deaths a year. We’ve lost some 3,100 U.S. Service people in the last three years of the Iraq War. When you compare the figures, our highways are nothing less than a ‘war zone.’ We’d just never look at it that way — because we are so addicted to high-speed, motor vehicle transportation. Yet that doesn’t in anyway make it any less wrong? And like any addict, our society has come up with a series of rationalizations to justify our addiction… Driving through mid-Florida today, we noticed several roadside accident scene crosses, flowers, and small signs that read: Drive Carefully… Should we be driving carefully, or should we be driving at all? The Amish have chosen not to drive motor vehicles because they pollute, are detrimental to family and community building (because instead of being at home or in the neighborhood a lot, now we always seem to be ‘en route’), and they increase the chances of death or maiming exponentially. And the Amish believe to kill someone is a very serious thing, no matter how it happens. Moral theologians (who drive) would, for the most part, spiritually pass a traffic fatality off to “unintended consequences.” Yet objectively, if we know driving is helping cause global warming and also increases the chances of maiming or killing someone in an accident, doesn’t getting in a car and strapping (or not) ourselves in, our children in — knowing there are other options (like staying home more, walking and shopping locally, et al.) — become an immoral act? Whether we have an accident, or not. The mere fact that we’re being lazy in, say, not walking, or bicyling, would seem a sin. (Intent is 9/10ths — if not 10/10ths — of the ‘spiritual’ law.) And increasing the possibility of taking our life, or our childrens’ lives, or other drivers’ lives… in the face of knowing how dangerous driving is, could also well be considered sin. Note: How many more fatal highway tragedies is it going to take for us to wake up to this? And more, how much further along the global warming continuum will we go before we wake up to this? The key is nothing short of changing the whole transportation infra-structure in line with reverting back to a decentralized society — like in the old days, before motorized vehicles.