Boycott ESPN

I’m a sports fan. Specifically, My teams are the Houston Texans (who are finally producing a winning season) and the Houston Astros (who forgot how to win), as well as the University of Texas Longhorns. I do like the Arizona Diamonbacks, since I do live in Phoenix, but I’m from Houston and if given the choice I would root for a Houston team any day.

I used to watch ESPN. That just ended with a sickening THUD.

Why? Here’s why…Hank Williams, Jr. has long been the voice of Monday Night Football on ESPN. Recently, he went on “Fox and Friends” and talked about his political beliefs. Specifically, he commented on the Obama-Boehner golf summit. He said “it’d be like Hitler playing golf with Netanyahu.” He later apologized and, at the same time, defended himself, saying, “Some of us have strong opinions and are often misunderstood. My analogy was extreme — but it was to make a point. I was simply trying to explain how stupid it seemed to me — how ludicrous that pairing was. They’re polar opposites and it made no sense. They don’t see eye-to-eye and never will. I have always respected the office of the President.”

He apologized for his “extreme” analogy because ESPN yanked his famous song, “Are You Ready For Some Football” from their Monday Night Football show. An official statement read, “While Hank Williams, Jr. is not an ESPN employee, we recognize that he is closely linked to our company through the open to Monday Night Football. We are extremely disappointed with his comments, and as a result we have decided to pull the open from tonight’s telecast.”

I’d like to know what they think about Mike Tyson’s recent comments on their radio affiliate in Las Vegas. On KWWN, the hosts of the show “Gridlock” joked with and laughed hysterically at Mike Tyson while he went on a nearly nine-minute tangent about a black man raping Sarah Palin, saying at one point, “Glen Rice is a wonderful man. He’s a wonderful guy. You want her to be with somebody like [Dennis] Rodman getting up … in there. Pushing her guts up in the back of her head!” (The link to the article on the Daily Caller includes the uncut audio, and it is not safe for work or kids, so be forewarned!)

So it’s not acceptable for a singer who probably wouldn’t be recognized by about half of the sports fans who know his song from MNF to make comments about how silly it is for John Boehner to be playing golf with a liberal dweeb like Barack Obama, but it’s perfectly acceptable for a former boxer, convicted of rape, to sit there and practically re-enact his crime on the air as if he would enjoy doing exactly what he was describing to a popular conservative figure? In which universe is this alright? How in the hell do liberals get off calling Tea Party activists racists and extremists when this is the kind of thing they say?

If and when ESPN either reinstates Hank’s anthem or decides to be fair and ban Mike Tyson for his outrageous comments, I might consider watching their network again. Until then? I’ll stick with Fox Sports. I don’t care if ESPN is the only network carrying a game; they can kiss my Texan backside.

When Your Favorite Sports Team Sux…..

Those folks who have been here since Steve and I joined up know that I really love foreign affairs.  And any of you who have been reading us since then also know that I consistently chastise everyone for not giving a damn about foreign stuff.  My posts to the effect are basically ignored except for occasional polite comments. But you have to throw me a bone here. This is crazy stuff.

North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Il is a certifiable nut.  If he was captured and brought to trial here in the US, he would be sentenced to life in prison without parole if not death.  But his lawyers might plead the “insanity defense.”  And, by God, I – as a supporter of tough sentencing and capital punishment – would totally agree.  The man is a total whack-job. This sums it up.

North Korea’s football team has been shamed in a six-hour public inquisition and the team’s coach has been accused of “betraying” the reclusive leader’s heir apparent following their failure at the World Cup, according to reports.

The entire squad was forced onto a stage at the People’s Palace of Culture and subjected to criticism from Pak Myong-chol, the sports minister, as 400 government officials, students and journalists watched.

The players were subjected to a “grand debate” on July 2 because they failed in their “ideological struggle” to succeed in South Africa, Radio Free Asia and South Korean media reported

The team’s coach, Kim Jong-hun, was reportedly forced to become a builder and has been expelled from the Workers’ Party of Korea.

The coach was punished for “betraying” Kim Jong-un – one of Supreme Leader Kim Jong-il’s sons and heir apparent…..

However, media in South Korea said the players got off lightly by North Korean standards.

“In the past, North Korean athletes and coaches who performed badly were sent to prison camps,” a South Korean intelligence source told the Chosun Ilbo newspaper.

Incredible.  And these people have nukes.  It’s amazing.  A totally Homer Simpson kinda thing where you smack your own forehead and say “Doh!”  But we keep coddling these imbeciles.  Simply amazing.

Sam Wins!!!!

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I’m pretty pumped.  Sorry, Mel.  University of Oklahoma quarterback, Sam Bradford, won the Heisman Trophy this evening.  He is truly the best player in college football this season. Consider his stats…

302-442 passing for 48 touchdowns and 4,464 yards in 2008 alone. A QB rating of 186.29  and a completion percentage of 68.3%.  He led the nation’s most prolific offense ever.  The Sooners scored at least 58 points in their last six games and were the first NCAA team in modern history to score 60+ points in five consecutive games.  He led the nation in touchdowns, and their 702 points scored were the most ever in NCAA history.

Add to the fact that he is the first-ever Native American Heisman winner (I think, but need to verify) and he is handsome as hell.  But most of all, he is humble, reserved, intelligent, and- above all……an Oklahoma Sooner. 

I feel a certain sense of empathy with Sam.  Just like the liberal media dissed McCain and proclaimed Obama the “annointed one,”  the sports media blasted OU.  They said they didn’t deserve to play for the Big 12 title (they did), and they were proclaiming Florida QB, Tim Tebow, as their own version of the “annointed one.”  Unlike McCain, Bradford won the vote.

Congrats Sam!!!! Boomer Sooner!  OU shall defeat Florida and shall be the national champions.

More From China

I really appreciated this editorial from the Washington Times. I appreciate most editorials from the Washington Times.  Nevertheless, this one captures a great deal of my own sentiment regarding China as host of the 2008 Olympics.

AS CHINA’S COMMUNIST leadership conceived it, this year’s Olympic Games were to mark the country’s debut as a global power, with a booming economy and rapidly modernizing society. Instead, it’s beginning to look as though the Games could become a showcase for violent repression, censorship and political persecution by a regime that has failed to rise above the level of police state. Though they present themselves as worldly and reformist, President Hu Jintao and his leadership group seem unable to grasp how the policies they have pursued in recent months have undermined the honor of staging the Olympics and risk destroying China’s international prestige.

Of course, we all know that this a facade.  French President, Nicolas Sarkozy, has mentioned the possibility of boycotting the opening ceremonies.  Even the EU is taking up the matter of a full boycott in response to the events in Tibet.  Strange that Europe should display more gumption than the US in such matters.

I hate to sound wishy-washy.  Sometime I really love George W., but sometimes he really frustrates me.  His embrace of Putin and his refusal to come out stronger against the latest Chinese brutality really leave me speechless.

Unfortunately, the Chinese leadership may have been encouraged by Western leaders — including President Bush — to believe it could maintain these policies and still hold a successful Olympics. Though French President Nicolas Sarkozy has now said publicly that he would not rule out boycotting the opening ceremony in Beijing in response to the repression in Tibet, Mr. Bush has not altered his ill-considered statement that he would attend the games as “a sports fan.” Yesterday, the White House reiterated that the president plans to attend the opening ceremony, gratuitously signaling to Mr. Hu that he need not fear that imprisoning dissidents or beating Tibetan monks will affect even that most political of Olympic events.

I guess it’s easy for me to sit here and hope against hope that the President will make stronger statements against the thugs in Beijing and Moscow.  I understand the political game.  But how long do you let it go on, and where do you draw the line in the sand?  Reagan didn’t feel the need to appease the USSR, and he brought it down.  What has changed that we are not able to do this?  Maybe the fact that China has an economic stranglehold on the US?

I have a feeling that explains it, but eventually it will come to blows.  Anyone who believes that China and the US are not on a collision course is seriously deluding themselves.  The question is “when”, not “if.”  I don’t feel that we do ourselves any good by continuing to enable the police state in Beijing.  Events as prestigious as the Olympics only lend credibility to this dictatorship and give them increased economic pull on the global stage.

At some point, someone is going to have to ask the question – “When is enough, enough?”  All we are doing at this point by fostering this communist atrocity is making it stronger -day by day.  We feed it our dollars and euros and pounds.  We’re only making things more difficult for ourselves in the future.  For – if anyone believes that the engagement of China, so notably embraced by Richard Nixon, is going to work – they are sorely wrong.  Only guts, fortitude and resolve will solve the China problem.

At this point – we’ve almost guaranteed the fact that the China resolution won’t be pretty.  Why continue to make it worse?

Escaping From My Escape?

Any of you who have been readers of this blog or my past blog at RedStateGay know that I have two major passions in life – politics and sports.  Everyday when I arrive home from work I spend a couple or a few hours online reading everything I can about politics and quite a bit about sports as well.  Sports (particularly college sports) has always been my escape.  Sometimes, after a bad day at work, I don’t want to read all about the negative things going in the world or the bloodsport known as politics.  So, I often lose myself in the pages of ESPN.com, SportsIllustrated.com, SportingNews.com, etc.

Sports had always been an innocent diversion for me.  I always love to keep up with my Oklahoma Sooners, my high school alma mater, Midland Lee, some pro sports, most college sports.  My thirst for knowledge extended beyond politics to a place where men and women competed in the realm of athletics in order to attain excellence.  The competition and personalities that come with the world of sports is almost equal to that of politics. When I didn’t want to read about the latest suicide bombing in the Middle East or the latest filibuster in the Senate – I could always check the scores from last night’s basketball games.

Unfortunately, I think my favorite escape has gone the way of politics and current events.  For every interesting or uplifting story I read on ESPN.com, there are plenty more to bring me down.  I’m left to wonder what the world is coming to when our sports heros become as tainted as third-world dictators or scandalous politicians.

Consider today’s headlines at ESPN.com.  I checked into sports first today after I got home from work.  If you go onto ESPN.com’s page, there will be the main page with headlines from various sports.  Across the top of the page, there is a link that you can click on that will take you to another “main page” for each major sport.  As I clicked on each one, I became despondent and disheartened.  I might as well have read the obituaries or police reports in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.  Here is a sampling of the headlines:

A-Rod Expects Drug Questions

Formula One’s Alonso Rejects Spain Racism Claims

LSU QB Perrilloux Suspended For Rules Violation

DUI Arrest Costs Vol Punter 5 Games, Scholarship

Gamecocks WR Lecorn Arrested On Drug Charges

Ex-Texas RB Taylor Sent To Jail For 5 Months

FSU Puts Itself on 2 Years Probation After Scandal

Discipline Considered For Beavers In Confrontation

Charges Dropped vs. Memphis’ Taggart, Robinson

Junior’s Nationwide crew Chief Suspended 6 Races

Stewart, K. Busch Placed On Probation

Chelsea Boss Grant Receives Death Threats

Are you depressed yet?  I sure was.  Something as innocent and entertaining as athletic competition has suddenly become a reminder of the worries, scandals, crimes and drama that plague so many aspects of our everyday lives.  Nothing can be more relaxing and exciting as a day at the ballpark or watching football on the big screen with your buddies at home.  But now, sports has become a drama that reflects so many of the negative realities in everyday life.

I’ll readily admit that part of the problem is news coverage in the realm of sports. History is full of athletes and sports teams tainted by scandal.  The new age of the media and the papparazi have placed the spotlight on athletes. We know more today about these celebrities than people ever knew of Babe Ruth or Wilt Chamberlain in their wild heydays.

But I also see more of these issues pouring into college and high school sports where the young men and women were supposed to be insulated from the excesses of money and fame.  I gave up on most pro sports long ago because I was disenfranchised by the commercialism and drama that was so rampant among the professionals.  But now I see these young people tainted by adults and the images of celebrities.  I see college stars being arrested or booted off teams.  I see schools being investigated for cheating or paying players.

It makes me want to give up on society at times.  I’m not sure what to think. My heros are not the overpaid pros who have big houses and rich, belligerent agents.  My heros are the kids who get a scholarship to a great college or university.  The young men and women who play sports, not for pay, but for the love of the game.  Now – even that is disappearing in a haze of greed awash with dollars.  Coaches and schools who are supposed to be instilling a sense of worth in these students are allowing them to run rampant and get themselves into legal trouble. And some of these coaches are criminal as well.

I’m all about personal responsibility, but our institutions of higher learning are supposed to be dedicated to education and arming their students with the tools they need to be productive adults.  In the area of athletics, that is not happening.  Slowly, the line is being blurred between pro and college and high school athletics  More of these athletes are ending up in rehab, on the streets, or in jail.  Sports at this level was supposed to build character, promote friendly competition and teach life lessons.  Reading those headlines makes me think otherwise.

And that makes me sad.

NCAA Football Note

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Just a quick note sure to bore any non-football posters on the site –

The NCCA fotball season has been nuts.  The #1 (LSU) and #2 (California) teams lost last night.  Last week the then-#2 team (USC) also lost.  The week before that, half of the top 10 teams went down.

My Sooners beat one of the few undefeated teams left (Missouri) last night.  That means we’re still in the hunt for a national championship.  What a crazy season this has been.

BOOMER!

SOONER!

NFL Dog Killer

 My Pups

I’m not sure how many sports fans are commenters on this blog.  I warned Steve a long time ago that I am an sports nut (wait til my OU football blog next week).  The case of the Atlanta Falcons star quarterback, Michael Vick, has transcended the lines of sports gurus into public discourse.  So, I feel that it is fair game for the blog.

Mike Straka writes a regular and  annoying column for FoxNews.com.  I regularly agree with him, but he’s just way into his work.  He wrote a good commentary on Michael Vick though.  Vick is accused of bankrolling a dog-fighting operation that occured on a property that he owned.  Pitbulls were set up against each other in fights.  Losing pups were often killed for their failures – usually by drowning, beating electrocution and other inhumane actions. And apparently, Vick participated in killing the losers.

Sorry to sound like a leftie, but I have 3 pups that are my life.  Any person who kills a dog for such a ridiculous reason in such an inhumane manner is “scum” in my book.  And Michael Vick has placed himself squarely in the realm of scum.

I don’t care if he is a pzro football superstar.  Fame and money weren’t enough for this jackass.  He is a role model to lots of kids and young players.  And this is the example they are offered.

I’ll profess right now – I am not a fan of pro sports.  I am a fanatic of college and Texas high school sports.  Those players mainly do their thing for the love of the game.  I’ve become disenfranchised with pro sports precisely because of idiots like Michael Vick.

Consider this my sports rant for the week.  Anyone who is capable of doing evil, unspeakable things to an animal is probably capable of doing the same things to a human.  You wonder why folks like me are so disillusioned with pro sports?

If the National Football League reinstates this jerk after his much-deserved trip to jail, I’ll lose all respect.  It’s time to readjust the expectations of pro athletes and let them know that they are to be held to the same standards as the rest of us.

Killing puppies sucks, dude.  Get a life.