Posts Tagged ‘Abraham Lincoln’

Athletes and Religion: Seems to be Working for the Broncos

November 30, 2011 1 comment

Retired NFL quarterback, Kurt Warner, an active, devout and prominent Christian, recently advised Bronco quarterback sensation Tim Tebow to cool it with the religious rhetoric he uses quite publicly. I think this is a dangerous piece of advice that threatens Denver’s football season.

Why would you want to anger God when he has clearly climbed aboard your bandwagon and is actively rooting for you to get to the Super Bowl? Oh, there are lots of athletes who, after scoring a touchdown or making an interception, point their fingers toward the sky and thank God. But unless they play for the Denver Broncos, they are all sadly mistaken. Their particular great play was just coincidence.

As everyone knows, God became a fan of the Denver Broncos earlier in the season- in fact, six weeks ago. I have the press release:

PR Newswire
From: Heaven

Dear Media,

Having watched the young man when he played at the University of Florida, God noticed that Tim Tebow wore eye black referencing a passage from the Gospel of John from the New Testament. While God has never been fond of humans wearing religion on their sleeve, he is actually intrigued with the notion of wearing religion as eye black. Heaven is thusly, herewith announcing that the professional football team called the Denver Broncos, which has chosen Mr. Tebow to lead their offense, is God’s favorite football team for the 2011 season.

Kurt Warner argues that religion and faith in God is something you practice in daily life and that public pronouncements about it in connection with success on the football field alienates some fans and is something better kept in private. Please. When God officially endorses your team, I say you flaunt it.

If you were a political candidate and God came out in favor of you, would you not buy full-page ads in even godless publications like the New York Times? Of course you would.

It was Abraham Lincoln who once uttered the famous phrase: “I hope to have God on my side, but I must have Kentucky.” A fine piece of electoral humor, but seriously misguided. When you pass only 20 times a game and your completion percentage is less than 50%, clearly, God is all that is necessary to go 5-1 in your first six starts.

And if any further proof was necessary, have you checked out the Indianapolis Colts this year? They are 0-11. On their helmets, a horse shoe. That’s right- an advertisement for hooves. I think we know who’s rooting for those guys.

A Violent History

January 11, 2011 Leave a comment

The events of Saturday in Tucson, Arizona shook us all. The violence and bloodshed were shocking. And though previous political assassination attempts in American history have been largely absent an attendant mass shooting, the sheer number of these incidents is stunning.

An educational web site called Digital History has a fascinating and detailed article called Political Assassination: The Violent Side of American Political Life.

Here’s the stunning part:

Nine American Presidents – Andrew Jackson in 1835, Abraham Lincoln in 1865, James Garfield in 1881, William McKinley in 1901 Harry S. Truman in 1950, John F. Kennedy in 1963, Richard Nixon in 1974, Gerald Ford twice in 1975, and Ronald Reagan in 1981 – have been the targets of assassination. Attempts have also been made on the lives of one President-elect (Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1933) and three Presidential candidates (Theodore Roosevelt in 1912, Robert F. Kennedy in 1968, and George Wallace in 1972). In addition, eight governors, seven U.S. Senators, nine U.S. Congressmen, eleven mayors, 17 state legislators, and eleven judges have been violently attacked.

The most common unifying characteristics of those who have attempted Presidential assassinations in the United States: unemployed and single. Nine out of eleven had not worked in the year prior to the assassination attempt. Only one was married and had children.

Very few of these attempts have actually been purposely politically motivated. John Wilkes Booth, the Lincoln assassin was a clear cut case of an ideologically-based murderer. Sirhan Sirhan, the assassin of Senator Robert Kennedy claimed his attack was due to RFK’s pro-Israeli political stance. Booth expected he would become a hero in the South but did not and would write sadly at the cold hand he’d been greeted with by residents of the former confederacy. Richard Nixon would win the Presidency in 1968 and he was, if anything, an even more ardent supporter of Israel than Robert Kennedy.

Almost all have been solitary acts of violence; only in two cases were the acts part of an organized conspiracy; Lincoln and an attempt on the life of President Harry Truman organized by Puerto Rican nationalists.

I do not know what is says or what it implies. But violence against our political representatives is a part of our lives and of the history of this nation and it is not, in any way, unusual or an aberration.