Words: A Tree Falls

Angeles Forest

Angeles Forest

There was a horrible accident in the Los Angeles area this past weekend when a large tree fell on a wedding party killing one person and injuring others, including a young child.

Perhaps it’s the circumstances, a wedding celebration, and the “struck by lightning” nature of the event that is both compelling and repelling at the same time.

It’s a story made for our 24-hour-news-obsessed culture where everyone loves a train wreck.

While trees fall all the time, in urban America there must be a detailed explanation and response.

The news reported:

-‘The city said there would be an ongoing investigation of what caused the tree to fall.”

-“The fire spokesman noted Saturday that, the year before, a tree had fallen in nearby Pasadena one day with no indication that anything was wrong.”

-“CBS Los Angeles reporter Tina Patel tweeted Sunday that Penn Park will remain closed until the city can examine the remaining trees.”

All this gives rise to the bizarre notion that nature can be duly inspected, corrected and controlled, an idea that Californians, especially, should realize is not exactly realistic.

Perhaps when they are done examining Penn Park they can close Angeles National Forest and check the trees there, too.

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