$100 handshakes and unbridled hypocrisy: Welcome to the NCAA’s gilded cage

It would be difficult to discuss major college athletics without liberally employing terms like “hypocrisy” and “double standard.” One might even find a reason or six to sprinkle in the occasional reference to “unfair labor practices” from time to time. While the NCAA and their member schools rake in millions from their football and basketball programs, the athletes actually doing the heavy lifting are expected to be “amateurs.” The hypocrisy behind that expectation is laughable. How could it be anything else when everyone but the athletes are making money off their labor? In any other milieu, that would be called what it is: exploitation. Continue reading

And Jesus said, “Verily I say unto thee, feel free to cherry-pick my teachings to suit your prejudices.”

When President Donald Trump defended white nationalists last week, it seemed like much of the country couldn’t condemn him fast enough. In addition to a wave of opprobrium from progressives, Republican lawmakers, conservative pundits, and CEOs all rushed to distance themselves from the scandal-prone president. But as the condemnations pile up, one group has yet to abandon the commander-in-chief: his evangelical Christian advisers. Instead of criticizing Trump’s remarks, many of these faith leaders have either remained silent or have simply offered general denunciations of racism. Others, such as Liberty University president Jerry Falwell Jr., have even gone so far as to defend the president. So far, in the aftermath of Trump’s response to the violence in Charlottesville, only one of Trump’s evangelical advisors has stepped down.

Once upon a time, when Jesus (the one I don’t believe in, but work with me here) walked the Earth in human form, he recognized that some Americans were morally superior to others. These righteous, right-thinking Christians deserved, because of their unerring, unshakable faith in God, to be given the right to exercise dominion over America. Thus would they show other, lesser mortals the Way, the Truth, and the Light.

“You are the Chosen Ones, the people God has selected to exercise dominion over the world…and to turn America and its government back to God”…said Jesus to no one ever. Continue reading

Today on Trump TV, part 4

Edumication? Who needs edumication?? (A $70.3 million example of backasswards priorities.)

A look at Katy ISD’s Legacy Stadium, which cost $70.3 million to complete. The stadium will host its first varsity football game on Thursday, Aug. 31, 2017 when Katy Taylor plays Foster. (Photo credit: Matt Young, Houston Chronicle)

Katy High School’s eight football state championships ties the record for the most of any school in Texas. In a couple weeks, the Tigers and the other Katy Independent School District teams also will be able to boast about playing in the state’s most expensive high school football stadium. Katy’s Legacy Stadium, which opens Aug. 31 when Katy Taylor plays Foster in the first regular season high school football game of the year, ended up costing about $70.3 million. The stadium itself cost $58 million, but then there was another $12.3 million spent on the new fieldhouse attached to the stadium, the parking lot, exterior lighting, surrounding roadwork, drainage and utilities.

Once upon a time (2011), in a land not so very far away (here in Portland), I wrote a few posts about horribly misplaced priorities involving Texas and high school football. Allen Independent School District was so strapped for funds they were forced to cut teaching positions and dial back other parts of their edumicational mission. Nothing unusual about that, right? That’s been the sad story of our collective lack of commitment to educating our children for years now. MAKE AMERICA DULL AND BLINDLY OBEDIENT AGAIN!! Continue reading

There are racists among us…and there always has been

When Pharisees claim ownership of Christianity, you get the Evangelical Advisory Board

The President’s “Evangelical Advisory Board” (EAB) is supposed to be…well, I’m not at all certain what’s its purpose is. It’s not as if they’re representing their faith with any honesty or integrity. EAB seems to be more about providing cover for the President as he and his Administration attempt to screw over as many Americans as possible. Betty Bowers’ tweet may be satire, but there’s a large element of truth in it. EAB represents a strain of Christianity more committed to creating a theocracy (which they’ll administer, of course) than advising the President on matters of faith. Continue reading

Today on Trump TV, part 3

It’s important to remember the REAL threat to America- scary immigrants