How Long Before the UN Intervenes?

And so Birmingham, Alabama continues its descent into third-world-nation status.

First we learn that Jefferson County, which is basically Birmingham, has the highest per capita incidence of syphilis in the country. Woo-hoo! We’re number one!

Next, the city spends $3 million on the One Laptop Per Child boondoggle for its public elementary and middle school students. This, in spite of the fact that OLPC’s were created for third-world children who don’t have access to any other technology (as opposed to American kids who all have cell phones that run rings around the OLPC), and Birmingham doesn’t know what to do with them anyway.

Now, to address the problem of violent crime in the city, Mayor Larry Langford calls on community leaders to … are you ready? … don sackcloth and ashes in a day-long prayer vigil.

The night featured collective prayers for forgiveness and fiery sermons calling for the city to repent in order to stop the violence plaguing the city.

“Let there be so misunderstanding: Satan is at work in this town,” Langford said. “And It is time to pray.”

What a doofus. I’m all about the power of prayer, but the city’s already got plenty of pastors. The mayor is the one who’s supposed to get out there and fill the potholes, and this ain’t getting it done. As Instapundit said:

…this is the worst sort of politico-religious pap. The problem isn’t that Birmingham isn’t humble enough. The problem is that it’s got thugs on the streets that it’s not controlling. That doesn’t call for self-abasement by the community, though the Mayor and the Chief of Police might consider dropping to their knees and begging forgiveness — from the community, not God — for failing to do their jobs.

So I must ask myself, am I living in a banana republic here? What’s next, malaria outbreak? 100,000% inflation? Cuban “advisors” setting up bases in the city? Anything is possible.