The NFL: National Football League or Narrating Future Life?

Before getting married, I was what you would call a casual sports fan.  With the exception of the Olympics, sports were an occasion not a way of life.  However, in marriage things change and compromise is the goal.  So I traded CSPAN and morning news for ESPN and Mike and Mike.  Needless to say sports news is a part of daily life now.  However, in recent years it has become the action of athletes off the field of play that has dominated the headlines as much as their accomplishments on the field.  Names like Rice, Pistorius, Peterson, Hardy, and Hernandez have become synonymous with violence.  But are these isolated incidents?  Are they a result of on field competitiveness spilling over off the field?  Or have the actions of society over the last several decades finally manifested themselves in the microcosms of professional sports for all to see?

In the cases currently tormenting the NFL, I believe we are reaping what we have sewn.  Professional athletes are idealized. Here we have a profession where you essentially work half the year and make more money in one season than most people will earn in their entire life. This was not always the case. When Joe Namath was drafted his contract was for $427,000. This year’s first draft pick, Jadeveon Clowney, has a contract worth $22.3 million. Almost every male athlete I have taught believed he would go pro; none have.

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“Let’s Compare George W. Bush to Hitler” Says Teacher to Students

If ever there was a single case for homeschooling your children, this could be it.

While George W. Bush has had his share of adversaries, for someone to compare him to Adolph Hitler is just plain ignorant. A sixth grade teacher, who asks their students to conjure up connections between him and Hitler, is outwardly demented.

Yet, three days prior to September 11, that’s exactly what happened in a Washington D.C. school. Students were instructed to use a graph and compare President Bush and Hitler for a homework assignment.

The children were instructed to gather background information for the assignment from texts previously distributed by the school. 

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The Relevance of September 11, 2001

The President of the United States completed a somber and sobering speech this evening to the American people regarding ISIS. Unless you have been in a coma for the past couple of months, you know what entity he speaks of.  ISIS (The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria); a terror organization that has finally managed to wake our ever-lukewarm president from his wait-and-see foreign policy approach.

Many of us will make our pilgrimage to the New York 9/11 site to respectfully stop and reflect on the loss of life on that day.  For some of us, it is ever so personal. The constant reminder of TERRORISM, thirteen years later, weighs on our souls.

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NATO is Not Yesterday’s News

Created in 1949, NATO was originally intended to be a cooperative alliance aimed at preventing another world war and stopping the spread of communism from the Eastern European block controlled by the Soviet Union. Since its inception, NATO has played an integral part in joint US/European ally military operations around the world.  Yet, in the last decade its power appears to have waned. Differing opinions between world leaders in the NATO ranks, economic crises, attention demanding domestic issues and a move away from interventionist policies have all contributed to the diminished capacity of the NATO alliance.

However, this year has seen a surge of activity demanding the attention of US and EU leaders, and the need for more comprehensive joint responses. 

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Are You Tired of Politics, Too?

“I hate politics.”

I often hear that comment, especially in today’s divisive political environment and after yet another ugly primary season. And it is apparent from the disparity in the number of “likes” I receive on my political Facebook posts as compared to my “happy” personal posts, most people would be content to never see anything pertaining to the world of political issues.

Perhaps you also think that “social” media isn’t the place for political posts. That’s fine, but please remember that social media was the driving force in the last two presidential campaigns, so while conservatives shy away from its use, those on the left solidly embrace it.

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