October 13, 2010 was not September 11, 2001. There were people celebrating in the streets but their joy had nothing to do with death and a warped idea of martyrdom. If the god of the crescent moon proved anything on 9-11, it was a capacity for hating and killing. Christ instead, proved in Chile that He can save, here and now.
The miners prayed incessantly during their 69 day captivity. They were all Christians; none of them gave up hope of getting out to see their loved ones again. The scenes of tender compassion and care multiplied on the television screens of the world over and over. I was personally moved by the obvious sincerity of the President of Chile. He did not need a teleprompter to communicate with his people. He waited until the last miner was out to make his solemn promise that those who failed to provide for the safety of the miners were going to face the full force of the law.
In the first days after August 5 President Piñera (the “ñ” is pronounced like the “ny” in the English word “canyon”) took swift action to discipline those responsible for the enforcement of safety laws. He did not have to go around playing “bad Leroy Brown” and talking about kicking someone’s derriere. He took care of that business honorably and forcefully. As soon as a true assessment of the situation reached him, he fired every failing member of the bureaucracy from top to bottom and promised to pursue the strongest legal action against them after the rescue was completed. I heard nothing more about punishment of those responsible until the night when the miners starting coming out. Mr. Piñera took care of the urgent business at hand first with competence, transparency and kindness.
He was on TV almost an entire day without a teleprompter and we witnessed his sincerity and true emotional response as his compatriot miners began emerging from the mine. His triumph is also a triumph of free enterprise and faith. Chile got help from American private companies like Center Rock Inc., Schramm Inc., and our own Cupron Inc. from Richmond, Virginia. Japanese, South Korean, and German companies provided other critical products that made the rescue and care of the miners possible. The capitalist Christians shined. Planned Parenthood, Castro, Chavez, Kim, the Iranian shortie, and Al Qaida were obviously absent in this life-saving enterprise. Their business is to kill, impoverish and destroy. None of that was happening in Chile.
Watching the whole operation, I remembered the kind of country that America used to be before we were drowned in a sea of paperwork and bureaucratic red tape. In those long gone days we were able to attack any problem with ingenuity, common sense, confidence, and faith in God. What a formidable country we were then, when we were all Americans of the non-hyphenated kind. Remember? Those were the days when the tyrants of the world bowed to our President and every kid in the world wanted to be an American cowboy.
Chile had to go through the same experience we went. They had liberal governments of the left and right. Recently they got smart and put a team of capable people in charge. They had to surmount a terrible natural disaster and now this. They have done a tremendous reconstruction job and now they have rescued the miners in a display of clockwork coordination and technical prowess that is already the envy of the whole continent.
As usual there were American entrepreneurs involved in the solution. I did not see any community activists working along with them but I saw the future of the entire American Continent. Hopefully the example of those humble Chileans will get the whole world thinking in the right direction.
The god of hate, death, and destruction was not there but Jesus was very present. The miners wore a shirt with Bible quotes written on their backs: “To Him be the Glory for ever and ever. Amen.”
I was impressed by the devotion of the Bolivian miner, Carlos Mamani, who kneeled and praised Jesus as soon as he was released form the rescue capsule. He kept praising and thanking God even in the presence of the Communist president of Bolivia, Evo Morales well known for his animosity towards Christians and a revert pagan himself. What a witness he got from that young man, the most humble of his citizens!
Faith, patriotism, family values, hard work and common sense. From the high plateau of Atacama one can see that the future for Chile looks bright.
May God bless them as they grow in Him.
Published 17 October 2010.