Monthly Archives: January 2010

Brett Favre Watch, Day 2

It’s Monday after the NFC/AFC championship games, and we now know the Colts and Saints will be playing in the Super Bowl. Those that know me well know that I’m rooting for the Colts; however, I am not making predictions. The Saints have won a couple of games in a manner that can only be described as miraculous (see the Redskins game). I hope the Colts win…but the Saints seem like a team of destiny.

But as you can guess by the title, I’m going to write about Brett Favre. *sigh* I had a friend text me, teasing about my dislike of the All-Star, retired, un-retired, re-retired, un-retired-again quarterback.

Here’s the thing with Favre. I never disliked his ability as a QB; everyone knows this guy is a shoo-in for the Hall of Fame, and deservedly so. What I have been critical of is his method of dealing with teams he no longer wants to play for. He whined his way out of the Packers, he manipulated out of his Jets contract, and cost Mangini his job in the process.

The media is forever talking about whether or not he will return next year. Why? They haven’t even cleaned all the trash from the Superdome, and we’re talking about whether or not he’s going to retire.

First of all, Brett, we get it. You were injured when you were with the Jets, and you came back strong. You still have the ability to play with the best the NFL has to offer.

Next, you did the right thing by saying you’re not going to decide right now. That’s the right answer, even if you already have a decision. Don’t say anything until you’re ready to make a decision…and stick to it.

Finally, media. When it comes to Mr. Favre: shaddup. Stop talking about retirement, legacy, decisions, whatever. Talk about the Colts, the Saints, Miami, the Pro Bowl (which is a joke because Super Bowl players won’t be there), the NBA, or anything else with some relevance.

There ya go. Thanks for a good season, Brett. Now go ride a tractor for a few months before telling us what your decision is.

Category: Other NFL

Diversity is not a dirty word

One of the news items I picked up off Twitter today talks about Lorenzo Hoopes. According to the Pacific Justice Institute, Mr. Hoopes is a 96 year old man who “??has volunteered for decades with Paramount Theatre of the Arts” including 20 years as part of its Board of Directors. Directors must be approved by the Oakland, CA City Council before being seated.

After 20 years, one would think re-appointment is guaranteed. According to the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) community, not so fast. Mr. Hoopes contributed $26,000 to the Proposition 8 campaign in California, seeking to define marriage as one man and one woman. This contribution has caused public outcry against Mr. Hoopes’ re-appointment, with one activist claiming that “the gay community in Oakland is being run over by a bus.”

Thinking that I was missing something, I researched a little further, and found an article on change.org under the Gay Rights heading. The author references a Facebook group called “The Paramount: No Place for Homophobia,” stating that Mr. Hoopes is allowed to hold his beliefs…but should not be “rewarded” with a seat on the Board of Directors.

This issue refuses to go away. From my small corner of the world, it seems like compromise is not going to happen any time soon. Therefore, I would like to state my opinion…and hope I am not the target of hate mail.

As a Christian, I believe marriage is one man and one woman. Period. No ifs ands or buts.

However, I live in America, a democratic republic. Depending on what source is used, about 10% of our population is part of the LGBT community. This group is entitled to their freedoms, regardless of what my beliefs are…as long as their rights do not infringe on mine.

Should two gay men, cohabitating  and loving each other, enjoy the same rights as a traditional married couple? I have to say yes. However, I do not believe that is a marriage. Call it a civil union, call it a homosexual union, call it whatever you want…but I will not call it a marriage. You can call it a marriage if you want to…but I won’t. And if you call it a marriage, I’m not going to get myself worked up over it. It’s my definition. Possibly not yours.

But according to the change.org article, I am now a homophobe. Really? Just what is a homophobe, anyway? According to Princeton’s dictionary, a homophobe “hates or fears homosexual people.”

I do not hate or fear anyone in the LGBT community. Jesus commanded Christians to love our neighbor. He didn’t qualify it by saying only love straight people, or only love other Christians…he basically says we need to love everybody.

A frequent argument I have heard against alternate definitions for marriage is that homosexual couples calling themselves married will desecrate the institution of marriage. If you feel this way, I feel sorry for you. If anyone has desecrated marriage, it’s Christians. The divorce rate in our community is as high or higher than non-Christians. Therefore, I do not possess this fear…or any other fear from the LGBT community.

For what it is worth, I am not a proponent of Prop. 8 or similar propositions. I voted “no” when Arizona voters had a similar measure on our ballot. The main reason for my opposition is because I feel government has bigger fish to fry. Fix the budget…and then we’ll have time to kick around other stuff.

Mr. Hoopes has provided countless hours in support of the Paramount Theatre of the Arts. If he is re-appointed to the Board, it will be for his past service, not his contributions to Prop. 8. If supporters of gay rights call the appointment “a reward,” they are sadly mistaken.

In the corporate world, I was taught the value of diversity. I do not have to agree with everything my co-workers believe, and the workplace is better for having a non-homogeneous staff. If I don’t agree with you, calling me a homophobe is not going to solve anything. Let’s find some middle ground so we can live in peace, if not harmony.

Category: United States

Reproductive Rights

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I thought I would do another post that has almost nothing to do with the rest of my blog…but I think it still needs to be said.

Tessa Savicki recently delivered her ninth child at Baystate Medical Center, and requested the insertion of an IUD. From some of the articles I have read, this is fairly common. However, when she woke up from anesthesia, she discovered her tubes were tied (tubal ligation). Anyone living in the United States knows what happens next: mommy hires lawyer and sues hospital for gross negligence.

The article accompanying the thread on FARK states Savicki is receiving threats and criticism for her lawsuit. Some of the comments applaud the doctors for permanently sterilizing her without her authorization.

The reason for the harassment of Savicki is because her family uses public assistance, aka welfare.

In America, we value our freedom above all. We want reproductive freedom, freedom of speech, religion, et cetera; however, we are told from an early age that freedom comes hand in hand with responsibility. We have a responsibility to treasure our freedoms…to not take them for granted…to not abuse the freedom we enjoy.

Laws are restrictions on our freedom. Certain laws we regard as necessary because we trade off part of our freedom for protection. For instance, we may not like speed limits, but it protects us (somewhat) from the idiots who want to do 120 mph in a school zone and hitting children.

Generally, we allow freedom of about anything…as long as your freedom does not infringe on someone else’s rights. Today, there is no law that restricts women from having more children if they are accepting welfare. However, if a woman on welfare has additional children, it produces an additional burden on taxpayers.

Many laws are written as a knee-jerk response to people not doing the right thing. DWI laws were made as a result of impaired drivers injuring or killing others. Securities laws were created to prevent traders in powerful positions from taking unfair advantage of others’ investments. To prevent laws from being created to restrict our reproductive rights, we need to show that we are capable of doing the right thing.

Welfare is available for those families having a hard time with basic living expenses. But Americans are growing increasingly intolerant of people who take advantage of the system funded by taxpayers.

To protect our freedoms, we need to do the right thing. Consistently. Otherwise, we run the risk of having our freedoms taken away…whether it is driving, reproducing, or any other freedom we too often take for granted.

Category: United States

Holiday Happenings

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This is not our “Christmas letter”; that will come in some days to follow. However, I thought I would recap (mostly for my poor memory’s sake) our travels over the holiday season.

We flew into Pittsburgh on Christmas Eve. A relatively uneventful flight, no weather delays, hijacking attempts or other foolishness. However, we did have a great flight attendant that catered to us. We never heard for sure how long she was in the Army, but she was in long enough to retire from it. I’d guess that 20+ years would be the range of her service. She also serenaded us a couple of times during the flight, reminding us that the entertainment was without additional fees. Thanks, Southwest, for having a sense of humour.

When we got to the house, we were lucky enough to have a huge Italian seafood dinner being prepared with smelt, calamari, whiting, cuttlefish, and some other stuff that I can’t remember. Leaving Aimee’s parents’ house hungry is something that will never happen.

Christmas day we exchanged presents. While I bought m’girl a dishwasher, washer and dryer for Christmas, I was smart enough to buy a few other things for her. Although I felt like I didn’t buy enough. She bought me a Peyton Manning jersey and sideline cap (yes, I’m a Colts fan), a car stereo (we need a new one in the car and the truck), and shirts, cologne, and other stuff. All I got her was the first two seasons of The Big Bang Theory, a Cowboys jersey, and a very nice hand-painted mug. Well, she says she still loves me, anyhoo.

We also went over to her grandma’s house, and met other relatives there. Grandma lives in a charming farmhouse in Ohio that has fields extending to the Pennsylvania border. The snow that continued to fall made the ride more scenic.

On Sunday we headed up to my friends in Canadaigua, spending time over vino chatting about the good old days…and being constantly harassed by their three kids. A nice evening and morning spent.

We then went to my stepbrother’s house, met their family and my brother’s family for Christmas gift-giving. They have a great house outside of Syracuse, and their two kids (my niece and nephew) are growing up to be great kids.

My stepmom and dad were supposed to drive down, but had a problem with their truck, and couldn’t make it. Aimee and I made the decision to make the three hour drive to their house to see them, even if it was less than 24 hours…and the drive started at 9:00 at night. Started out as a bit of a slick drive, as it snowed almost the entire time…but made it there in good time and safe.

Then it was time to drive back to Ohio…where we spent the rest of the time with Aimee’s family, with the exception of watching UFC108 at Buffalo Wild Wings.

There were bumps along the way…but overall has been an enjoyable Christmas season. The gifts were nice, but what makes the holidays great is being to spend time with family and friends.

We fly back to Phoenix tomorrow…ready to get back in the grind of daily life again.

Category: Personal