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save me

amidst the agonisingly detailed and yet strangely uninformative coverage of this afternoon's airline crash in the hudson river, i've heard a refrain that never ceases to grate on my nerves.

repeatedly, the announcers on the news marveled at the "miracle" that the plane landed and that no one was killed. that this happened is no doubt remarkable, but to say it's a miracle is to denigrate the work of the pilot, co-pilot and crew who were actually responsible for the plane's landing and for getting the passengers out of the plane to be rescued. pilots are trained for this kind of thing, but landing a passenger plane on a narrow strip of water between two densely populated metropolises goes well beyond what any training program could cover.

if i wake up tomorrow and find out that the entire crew passed out before landing and that the plane guided itself by chance to the hudson, then, i will agree, that is something that could be deemed miraculous. because in that case, it would have happened without any attempt at intervention and direction. but as it stands, there was quite clearly a reason why events unfolded the way that they did, which does not require recourse to divine intervention.

to be fair, there has been plenty of praise given to the pilot, but why not leave it at that? he did something remarkable and deserves recognition. end transmission.

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