Good Day! Been a busy couple of days – so much so that I couldn’t finish yesterday’s postings in time! (Sorry!) While I prepare for the next interview, let’s discuss some things…
Football/Sports Update (Tuesday/Friday):
Applebee’s Football Picks:
Each week during the season the Applebee’s where I am from has a weekly $10 gift certificate for everyone who picks 5 winning teams of that week. They can pick any team they choose, though all 5 of their picks have to win to win the certificate. This week is different – with Thanksgiving games, we have a special section of picks this week.
My record for last week was 4 and 4, winning 1 and losing 2 on Thanksgiving before winning 3 and losing2 on Sunday. My season record is 0 and 13, with an overall record this season of 35 and 28 in 63 games.
Last Week’s Picks:
- Minnesota Vikings lost to the Detroit Lions
- Dallas Cowboys beat the Washington Redskins
- Indianapolis Colts lost to the Pittsburgh Steelers
- Tennessee Titans beat the Chicago Bears: My football coach in high school had a famous saying I keep repeating and saying that the Chicago Bears still need to learn: You need to play all four quarters. My confidence in the Bears has dampened over the years because, even in their better years, it seems like they forget this too consistently. The loss helps my record this week, but from what I watched, had they played the first three quarters like they played the fourth, they wouldn’t have had a heartbreaking loss – they’d have trampled the Titans. Maybe next year…
- Buffalo Bills beat the Jacksonville Jaguars
- Cincinnati Bengals lost to the Baltimore Ravens
- Arizona Cardinals lost to the Atlanta Falcons
- New York Giants beat the Cleveland Browns
Favorite Teams picks:
Unless there’s good reason, I rarely choose my favorite teams in any of these contests – I don’t want to throw bad karma their way by picking them. (Yes, as silly as it sounds, sometimes I believe in luck!) My favorites are the Chicago Bears, a team I grew up with and enjoy watching/cussing out, and the Green Bay Packers, another team I enjoy watching and have current local ties to. (I am also an odd duck, since these are rival teams, and their fans like to razz me for it. When they play each other, Bears over the Packers.)
To be fair, I also pay attention to the other NFC East teams, in particular the Minnesota Vikings (a rival to both of my favs, though a favorite of many of my friends – #3 in ranks of who I want to win) and the Detroit Lions (with no friend ties, this team could go 0-16 like they did a few years back and it wouldn’t bother me much – I just don’t want them to beat my teams.)
My record last week was 2 and 1 – The Lions beat the Vikings on Thanksgiving, while I picked the Titans to beat the Bears. This only left the Packers for Monday night.
My pick this week is:
- Green Bay Packers beat the Philadelphia Eagles
- Tuesdays are usually results, while Fridays are usually picks.
Stop Abusing the R Word
Yesterday I briefly touched on Trump’s election recount remarks on Twitter – but, like a lot of other days, I’ve not really touched much on his supporters. Lately it’s because the people opposed to him have been annoying me with their actions: while I’m okay with the protests, the riots and other actions are as bad as some of the ones Trump-supporting racists are taking. That includes using the “R” word.
Many of the memes and write-ups about this election from Anti-Trump support – including those who voted third party, did not vote, or “begrudgingly” voted for Trump – have voiced how many Trump supporters are “Racist,” their main arguments being the anti-Muslim/immigrant sentiment, the Mexican Wall, and (of course) Obama being half-black. While some of this is certainly true – skin-heads, Neo-Nazi’s, and other racists have come out in full force since the election, spray-painting Swastikas and racial slurs, bullying non-whites, and even attacking anyone remotely liberal online – The few of these kind of scum don’t represent all of the voters or define them with any form of unjustified hatred.
Don’t confuse the hatred they have with the ugly bigotry we are seeing – with the number of jobs that have either left the country for cheaper pastures or have become obsolete, there are many workers who are displaced or working below what they’re used to. They’ve been promised for years, much earlier than when Bill Clinton was in office (if you look into history,) that they would rebound, things would return to normal and the life they feel they deserve they’d have. They often fell for the various “paths to success,” such as going to college or learning a trade. Obama was the last “President of Change” – so when that change didn’t happen for them, when the insurance went up and they’re still working below what they feel they deserve, struggling to make ends meet while our elected officials squabble like kids and work with foreigners, some of whom have proclaimed their hatred for and disrespect of us – that was the last straw.
So in comes this knight in orange spray tan, someone they’re familiar with because of what they see on TV, in interviews and such, loaded with money, offering to take the leadership of the free world. He hits on your fears and your anger, tackles those sore spots – those people from other countries taking their positions, those terrorists coming to our country to kill as many of us as they can, those people who put being a thug above being respectable, above putting their past away – and stirs the fires in them. He runs against the perfect opponent: The wife of another “change” candidate, more famous for his Oval Office affair than for any good he’s done. In spite of how flawed he is, if not for the number of gaffs and mistakes the opponents made that handed the election to him, he remained their knight.
Many people are afraid and angry right now, afraid for their life, their livelyhood, from some people who are also justifiable angry as well as some people who are “brainwashed” into that hatred. That doesn’t make them evil or racist – in fact, it doesn’t make them any more different from you except in how to fix these problems. We are no different from them if we associate all of them with hatred, and we have no room to criticize their angst against Muslims and Mexicans if we can’t see them as human.
Burn a Flag
One thing that has exploded since the orange one tweeted from his butt again (no wonder it stinks!) is the issue of flag burning, a topic previously discussed and reviewed as protected under the First Amendment by the Supreme Court in Texas vs. Johnson in 1989. (Source: US Courts – http://www.uscourts.gov/educational-resources/educational-activities/facts-and-case-summary-texas-v-johnson ) If you know me you know where I stand as far as the act: I respect the flag and other symbology of the United States, and while you are free to burn, desecrate or otherwise disrespect any of them, it shows your character when you do it for the wrong reasons. That being said, you understand how I feel about the orange one’s spewage: he would be stupid to try for any laws against it.
That being said, if you value your first amendment rights, you should care about this issue. While history currently favors this act above respect, it’s not the first time the courts have flipped on an important issue – in fact, the most famous example involves civil rights.
Many people know about Brown Vs. Board of Education and the cases that followed that eventually brought the rights of normal rights to all citizens, but not as many remember the case it overturned. In 1896, The Supreme Court saw in favor of racial segregation in Plessy vs. Ferguson. History took over half a century to right itself from its decision.
This is being brought up to remind you that, if laws can be flipped and reversed in a good direction, it can also be flipped or reversed in a not-so-good direction. This makes Trump’s appointment to the Supreme Court extremely important: with a conservative judge in favor of what he wants, the possibility that he CAN pass such a law increases tremendously. It’s worth noting another court case here: Bethel School District #43 v. Fraser (1987), in which they found that a high school student who used obscene language in a speech did not have his First Amendment rights violated when he was given a suspension for it.
Unfortunately, we can’t ignore his orangeness’s thoughts on this if we value free speech. While we laugh at how ridiculous his proposals on this and other media comments are, we can also remember how other people once laughed at the idea of people of mixed races sharing the same schools and public places together. History, sadly, has no sense of humor.
Show some Respect
Last night my girlfriend Amanda expressed some frustration from people being asshats – in particular, about how a fact she posted on a news posting about the recount in Wisconsin got slammed by many conservative people. Even if I had the link, it’s not important – I’ve witnessed enough from people when I posted commentary and facts from Things I’ve actually heard to know what she’s talking about. I’ve also seen it happen to plenty of friends on both sides of the fence – most of them being trolled by punks looking to stir a fight than to debate or discuss.
While I can’t really say much to make her feel better (sorry, but no man should have to tell a teacher who argues with their school board to “grow a thick skin,”) I can start advising people to do as I’m going to start doing:
- List sources people can go to and follow. Unless you’re referencing from the article you’re arguing on, having 2-3 sources to prove your argument can solidify your stance. Treat it like a school assignment, if possible.
- Demand that they list their sources so that other people can go to and follow as well. Most of these people claim to have heard it in a speech or just are trying to stir the pot, and have little to back their statements up. If they’re serious, they’ll be able to find links to counter-argue with.
- Report the ones who are simply trolling. There’s no point in taking it further than that.
- Above all, don’t stoop to their level. Don’t give them the satisfaction of getting what they want, even if they deserve it.
We shouldn’t live in echo chambers where all we hear are like-minded voices – but by no means should we put up with someone trying to piss us off, either. It’s time to weed the riffraff from the garden…
Looks like I’ll have to post this after the interview… Have a great Day!!