Mistakes (and Why Bush Doesn't Ever Make Them)

I’ve made a lot of mistakes in my life. Some have been bigger than others. Some have inadvertently hurt other people. The best mistake I can possibly make is one that will hurt myself, and myself only.

Sometimes I get caught for making a mistake. There are consequences. Some of these consequences have been life altering. But thankfully, most of the time, the mistakes are small and require nothing but a small correction and immediate apology.

Then there are the big mistakes that I manage to correct just before they blow out of proportion to the point where it might do some permanent damage. Since I refuse to believe that all mistakes are negative, I try to put it in perspective and leave it an open-ended question that may someday be answered. Maybe I just got lucky. Maybe I wasn’t supposed to have made that mistake. Maybe I was meant to learn from it for some future purpose. I try to move on, but sometimes I wonder what life would be like had I failed to prevent the mistake, if I would have just let it happen.

Today I made one potentially life altering mistake that involved pushing two buttons. Had the wrong person seen what happened the moment I pushed those two buttons, this mistake would have set me back considerably in life. It would have changed everything. My goals, my aspirations, everything I care about would be forever affected by my carelessness.

Luckily someone on my side, someone looking out for me, saved me from my own mistake, correcting it before any of the dire consequences could be realized. He won’t read this, but he knows how he saved me from myself. While I’ll never be able to fully repay him, I hope he realizes his heroics, however minor in his own life, are giving me a second chance to stumble down this path, thankful that it’s still here.

I can also admit to a mistake last summer that almost cost me my own life and may well have taken the lives of others. I walked away with only a totaled car and a scratch on my arm. Did I deserve punishment, consequences? Yes. But I got away with it, just like I got away with the two buttons today. I know I was wrong. But for some reason, right now I’m alive. And tonight I’m thankful, sitting in front of my computer, that things have somehow remained the same since I woke up this morning. Luck, fate, chance, God, whatever you want to call it. Today it was on my team. And last summer it had never been more on my team.

I can only hope any mistake will condition, ingrain its wisdom into my brain, helping to minimize the chance of it ever happening again. Unlike our President, I have no problem admitting wrongdoing. We are fallible, but sometimes our biggest weakness is failing to admit it. We’re wrong all the time, more often than right. Decisions are either fleeting, deliberate, or somewhere in between. How do we really find out how to make the best possible decisions for ourselves? If we make them too quickly, do we lose part of your control to the pressure, to impulse? If mistakes are pardoned and allowed to turn into problems, and many people are hurt, how do we know when it becomes wrong? And why do you continue to be righteous, still confident the mistake was right? And even, if by some small chance, you finally admit wrongdoing, how can you erase the pain of all the people you hurt? Does this scenario sound familiar, or have I leapt back up on the stump again? What bothers me the most about tomorrow’s inauguration is that Bush was wrong about Iraq. He made a mistake. Millions of men and women in countries around the world have been hurt by this mistake. More people have been hurt by this mistake than by all of this past years’ biggest natural disasters combined. Why won’t Bush admit he was wrong? Well, to the average lefty news junkie, the answer is obvious. But public-poltical life aside...Karl Rove, Dick Cheney, Scott McClellen erased from the picture. I'm talking about morals here. If George W. Bush is the genuine righteous Christian he claims to be, then answer me this: how is he not racked with guilt every night for having the cause of much pain around the world? He's so proud to say that God guides his every decision as a leader. God is also the reason why he quit his alcoholic ways. No offense to God, but I would rather he had stuck with the bottle until it was too late to get mixed up in the Republican political machine. John McCain, or Al Gore, might be President today. Tens of thousands of people might still be alive today, and millions more may still have loved ones alive today.


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