1-Man’s Opinion on Sports–Friday “Did You Watch–What Do You Feel?”

Posted by on June 5th, 2020  •  0 Comments  • 

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“Feelings on a Friday”

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A weekend of mourning is underway across the nation.

Across the country, around the world, the global outpouring in memory of George Floyd, has been stunning, heartwarming.

You have to be moved by what you have seen.

The outpouring from leaders, politicians, sports figures, the media, is superb.

The funeral service was stunning in Minneapolis.  The (8:46), nearly 9-minutes of silence at the end of the ceremonial, brought tears to my eye.

So were the sights of the tears in the eyes of Minnesota senator Amy Klobuchar, the mayor of Minneapolis, and an entourage that included Minnesota Vikings tight end Kyle Rudolph, and Timberwovles star Karl Anthony Towns, as they knelt infront of the Floyd casket..

The eulogy was moving triggered by not only Floyd’s last comments, ‘I can’t breathe’, but the new phrase, ‘get your knee off my neck’.

The sports world was spinning after Drew Brees initial statement about respect for the flag, and his apology, and the reaction in sports to comments by LeBron James, Magic Johnson and more.

But as we head into this weekend, what we have seen, experienced and felt, numbing as it can be, has a different feel right now.

I hope we are embarking on a very different Civil Rights Movement.

You look at the demonstrators in London, Paris, Amsterdam, in Africa and other global cities, you sense we are on the brink of something very different about to happen.

A civil rights movement, globally is brewing.  This is not voter’s rights in the South; this is not abolition of slavery; this is not just about police injustice.

We are about to embark possibly on change in the US, and maybe world wide.

I would have thought progress would have been made during the 9-year run under then-President Obama, but whatever progress was made seems to have been washed away by what happened in Minneapolis.

Now there is a true movement building, not just in sports, but in the real world, to make changes.

My next door neighbor, the mother of two young boys, is a police  officer, who is confronted with danger every day of her life.  Even more so at this hour, this weekend.

My neighbor across the street is an African-American, who has lived a quality life, while victimized by injustice by white society for his entire 53-years..

I feel for them

I have hope that America, at a cross-roads, makes the right decision  in changing society, and in the treatment of every citizen, regardless of race, religion.

My feelings as we head to a weekend  are of hope, and no longer hurt.

I hope the death of George Floyd will not be in vain, and that his name will be a ‘beacon for finding a new way to live and govern’.

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1-Man’s Opinion on Sports–Thursday “NFL–What Do You Think Now?”

Posted by on June 4th, 2020  •  0 Comments  • 

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“NFL–What Do You Think Now?”

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He took a knee to stand-up for what he viewed was wrong in America.

We are in the 9th day of the civic unrest across America.

The riots have calmed down, the peaceful demonstrations have increased, but the damage has been forever done.

And now people are starting to reflect on what has just happened.

Murder charges in the 2nd degree and accessory to murder against three other cops, now formally filed.

But it does not really change anything, for George Floyd is dead, the billions of dollars of damages in the looting and fires will impact thousands for a long time.

The rage, the anguish, the disappointment, the sadness and all
should be carried with us each morning we get up.

Responses have come from all points of sports.

Three of the most vocal in the NFL all revolve around what Colin Kaeperneck  did a couple of years ago.

He knelt during the National Anthem.  Teammates did the same.  Playes around the league.  Then owners too.

But what he was trying to say, the on-going racial inequity in America was drowned out by all of us, screaming and yelling about his disrespect for the American flag.

Now years later, we have two pictures burned into our mind, Kaep taking a knee, and the knee across by the neck of George Floyd.

Seahawks coach Pete Carroll, a proponent of getting Kaeperneck back into the NFL said Wednesday…”we owe a tremendous amount of respect to Colin Kaeperneck, for taking a knee against racial inequality”.

Saints coach Sean Payton, viewing a bigger picture of society was more succinct.  “George Floyd was murdered-not killed-on video.  22-weeks from today you can vote for a change”

Hall of Fame running back LaDainian Tomlinson was more pointed.  “The NFL’s treatment of Kaeperneck gives the league a black eye….We should understand and appreciate what he did in a courageous moment….This was not 1-incident,  nor just 1-bad cop-this was knowing history….White Players in the NFL now need to stand together with us and say Enough is Enough.”

Since his exile from the NFL, now three years removed, we have learned more what the 49ers quarterback did.

We found out how he personally financed after school food-education programs for underprivledged inner city kids in San Francisco and Oakland.

He became a driving force funding and building a children’s hospital in Ghana, where his ancestors lived.

He has helped fund programs for prisoners in a ‘life after prison’ program.

He has done so much while minorities have continued to die in the streets of America at the hands of police brutality, under what Donal Trump says is a ‘law-and-order’ president.

More and more in the sports world have come front and center to say ‘we believe’ something is wrong, and ‘enough is enough’.

Colin Kaeperneck doesn’t have a job any longer in the NFL.

In a league that prides itself on charitable donations, maybe they should hire him to lead a ‘racial equality’ program on behalf of the league.

In a league that never says ‘we were wrong’, maybe they could say it now by relinking with Kaeperneck to make America a better place to live.

I’ll ask the NFL…”What Do You Think Now”…about Kaeperneck?

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1-Man’s Opinion on Sports–Wednesday. “Tell Me What I Should Feel”

Posted by on June 3rd, 2020  •  0 Comments  • 

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“Tell Me What I Should Feel?”

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How do you feel today about our country, what we are seeing, what is happening?

Tell me how I should feel.

There is an ache in my heart, a knot in my stomach, and sadness in my attitude, watching what we see daily.

I wanted to vomit the first time I saw the video of the ‘murder’ of George Floyd, lying in the gutter in Minneapolis.

I was enraged watching 3-other Twins Cities police officers stand there and not intercede as a handcuffed dead’s man life was snuffed out.

I am appalled to see the confrontations and the rage expressed by police officers towards peaceful protestors, standing on the line to supposedly protect our city.

I am disturbed by the protesters throwing things at police as they try to create confrontations.

I have a tough time distinguishing between outside agitators and protestors, but I am sure there is a mix.

I turn hateful after I watched two videos of gross looting of an Adidas store in Los Angeles, and vandalism of a Macy’s store.  I videoed both incidents.  I counted 31-African Americans going in and coming out of the store with goods.  I counted 21-other minorities raiding Macy’s before police got there.  These young people have a chance to make the right decision vs wrong decision going into a store, and look what they do.  Tell me what it to be gained by burning down businesses in your own village, businesses owned by fellow minorities.  How does that solve anything?

I fear the infrastructure of the ‘family unit’ in America is decayed to the point, that young America does not know right from wrong.

I am shamed to see video of armored carriers with weapons and soldiers riding down the streets of Washington, DC, our nation’s capital, as if this is a 3rd world country like Iraq-Iran-Afghanistan.

I hate the rhetoric from the White House, enflaming our nation about ‘taking back our streets’…’meeting force with force’ and so on and so on.

I understand about unemployment and racial profiling and a history of injustice.  But 99 out of 100-cops are dedicated to protect and pure in their approach to the job.

The same thing with the many African American people of color I am friends with.  Successful and classy.  They are not black nor brown nor Latino to me, they are just friends and they are Americans.

I was angered when I saw the ‘staged’ press conference by President Trump in the Rose Garden, as the military tear-gassed those protesting in Liberty Park, outside the White House grounds.  And then him going to the historic Episcopal church for a photo op with a bible.

I would never have thought a great country like ours, would have to deal with 105,000-deaths…43M unemployed….and now murders and arrests.

America has become a nightmare.

How do we fix it?  Government programs that help minorities train for jobs.  Better yet, federally funded programs that put minority applicants at the head of the line for federall funded construction projects, something similar to the WPA-CCC.  The line to sign up to earn a respectful living would go down the highway.

I don’t know how you build up family infrastructure.

Education?  Turn your community college system into a learning house for minorities to get degrees, help them get a job, get a better life.  A unique form of welfare payments where there is an outcome for those enrolled.

I am getting bombarded with hateful Emails from pro-Trump supporters, who don’t like my columns on my website right now.  They are entitled to their opinions, but I am not?

I can’t talk much about sports when my society and my country are ablaze.

So tell me, what I should feel about what I am seeing and experiencing?

Is it just me?  Is it them?  Is it our leadership?  Is it the values of society?

What do you feel?

Tell me what I should feel.

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1-Man’s Opinion on Sports–Tuesday “NFL-Quarterbacks–The Money Game”

Posted by on June 2nd, 2020  •  0 Comments  • 

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“The NFL Quarterbacks-The Money Game”

 

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So how much is too much, or should it be a ‘money free for all’ everytime someone’s contract comes up for extension.

I ask that as the next round of contracts come up for the next wave of great young quarterbacks.

Seattle’s Russell Wilson is the highest paid QB in the NFL…at 35M per season.  Been there, done that, Super Bowls, a ring, record setting career.

In fact virtually all the top names on the list have had great accomplishments:
1. Seahawks QB Russell Wilson: $35 million
2. Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger: $34 million
3.Packers QB Aaron Rodgers: $33.5 million
3. Rams QB Jared Goff: $33.5 million
5. Vikings QB Kirk Cousins: $33 million
6. Eagles QB Carson Wentz: $32 million
7. Cowboys QB Dak Prescott: $$30.1 million
8. Falcons QB Matt Ryan: $30 million
9. Titans QB Ryan Tannehill: $29.5 million
10. Colts QB Jacoby Brissett: $27.98 million
And now the question, as talks grind on, or get underway for the young starts waiting their pay-days after tremendous early season careers.

Understand the salary cap is 188M a year, and teams have to sign 53-players and do a delicate balancing act, defense-vs-offense and what years you pay what players.

Patrick Mahomes of the Chiefs has strung together two spectacular seasons, outplaying his rookie contract.  He has two years left at (26M) total, and talks have started on a pay-day extension.  Does he go to the state of the art 25M a year, and escalate from there?  He does have a ring in his resume too.

Dallas’ Dak Prescott has been battling for a top money contract for a couple of years.  He makes everything go for the Cowboys, but his asking price of 35M and going north up to 40M, is staggering, considering there are so many other players who want-have earned-deserve signficant contracts.

Houston has to take care of blooming star Deshaun Watson, due to make an anemic (1.1M) this year and talks are underway.  He may not Mahomes or Prescott but he is electric and the Texans catalyst.  A deal starting at (20M) sound reasonable.

Those are the marquee names in the pipeline next.

But the big issue, if you give Prescott (40M), that equates to almost 24% of your salary cap.  Can you give one player that type of figure knowing full well you probably have 8-other elite players in Dallas that need to be taken care of?

It is not a problem with a QB heading to their starlight.  That’s why future Hall of Famers, Tom Brady, Drew Brees, Philip Rivers  all signed deals for (20M) for the coming season.  Good paydays, leaving enough for other players to get.

Quarterback is the most important position on a team, but if you have a superstar LT that must be paid, and big names wide receivers and defensive players, how do you keep them, if the QB is taking home a massive amount of your salary cap?

It bears watching going forward, because every good young team now has to deal with this, today or a year from today or years from today.  The QB salary goes up annually.  So do the problems of balancing your salary cap.

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1-Man’s Opinion on Sports–Monday “Society Overtakes Sports-in Weekend of Importance”

Posted by on May 31st, 2020  •  0 Comments  • 

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“Sports & Society”

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This has been such a hard weekend to be an American.

Today instead of writing about what I see in sports, I will write about what I feel about society.

I will bypass writing about the MLB-Union civil war in baseball; the NFL’s attempts to open campus; the NBA-NHL schedule; NASCAR; player moves and other things that normally take up my day.

I will write about Atlanta and Washington, DC…Philadelphia to Los Angeles….Minnesota…what I saw…what I feel.

It feels like the worst days we have ever experienced.  Worse than 9/11, watching the Twin Towers come down.  The horrors of Newtown and all the other shootings.  Beyond the grief of the JFK and Martin Luther King assassinations.  The crushing loss of the Challenger crash.  Uglier than what we saw as Watts-Hough-Detroit-Little Havana burned to the ground.

I feel heartbreak, rage, shame, sadness.

This is more than the 1st Amendment-right to protest.  A criminal element has taken over our society.  Young Americans, with the decision to make, ‘right-vs-wrong’, rioting, looting, vandalizing.  Giving the finger and F-bombs to anyone-everyone in law enforcement.

In the midst of what I watched in the evenings, I thought about people taking knees.  The dirty cop with the knee on the neck of George Floyd, suffocating his life away.  And the knee Colin Kaeperneck and then other NFL players took, to protest racial intolerance.  Nothing has changed in our society, it has only gotten worse.

The most sacred things in our society, St-Patrick’s Cathedral in New York and Jewish synagogues there, broken into, desecrated, vandalized.  Here in San Diego, they set an American flag on fire and ran it up a mast-pole ablaze.

America has seen the horrors of life over the decades, and our President’s have stepped front and center.  Close your eyes and remember:

..George Bush standing with 1st responders in the midst of the smoldering embers of death around the Twin Towers.

..Obama singing ‘Amazing Grace’ at the memorial service for the shooting victims in a church in Charleston, South Carolina.

..Ronald Reagan giving the emotional speech in the aftermath of the Challenger Tragedy.

..Bill Clinton walking into the bombed out building in Oklahoma City surrounded by death.

..JFK and his press conference about the Cuban Missile Crisis on the brink of World War III.

..Martin Luther King and his ‘I Have a Dream’ speech as they sang ‘We Shall Overcome’ crossing the Selma Bridge.

And these days, with nearly 105,000 dead from the Virus…43M-unemployed, and now our cities burning down, the current President sits and tweets 32-times in an evening, criticizing one and all.  Everything about him right now is about politics, his needs and wants and desires to be re-elected.

I sat to jot some notes about the Trump era, and the more I wrote, the more upset I became about what the White House has become.  When I think of the last 3-years, these things flash into my mind.  I closed my eyes, and the sounds, sights and the tweets came rushing back.  Non-stop from the person who could pull the country together, but instead is content to fan the flames…watching it get pulled apart;.:

..Pandemic Press Conferences…Lies…Half Truths…Misinformation…Uniformed comments…Degrading attacks.

..The ‘Looting and Shooting’ tweets
..We have’ Vicious dogs and ominous weapons’ tweets
..’I am not to blame’
..’Liberate your state’…against advice of doctors
..Kids in cages locked up at the border
..Insults to veterans including the late John McCain
..Name-calling tweets about any and all politicians who question him
..Degrading comments to women
..Charlottesville and his ‘good people on both sides’
..All his people, the ones he hired, sent to prison

..The continued across the board firings of people he put in place
..The pardons he handed out to those convicted
..His ‘fake news stance’ towards all in the media
..Insults to our long time allies
..Condemnation of NATO and the World Health Organization
..Blame China..Blame the CDC..Blame the Governors…Blame the Democrats.
..Russia-North Korea

America deserves a leader who is caring and compassionate.  Not someone who believes he can attack Constitutional law, and has the right to offend,  because he lives at 1600-Pennsylvania Avenue.

Leaders of great countries, can change the world.
This leader has taken us to chaos and conflict and divisiveness.

As we sit here and hurt, sit here and mourn, sit here and pray for a Loving God to give us direction out of all that is wrong, I have just one feeling beyond today.

America deserves better.

This is Donald Trump’s America….all this ‘on his watch’.

To borrow the President’s phrase:  Make America Great Again

To use my phrase:  Make sure you vote, your chance to change things.

November’s elections cannot get here fast enough.

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