Lonnae O’Neal’s column about her reservations regarding her 12 year old son’s desire to play football is an insightful character study into the recent phenomenon of the “helicopter parent” syndrome. What is it today with this overprotective impulse? Indeed, should all of our “little snowflakes” be covered metaphorically in bubble wrap and kept in the basement for safety until their eighteenth birthday or beyond? As boys naturally and rightly model their fathers, it is no surprise that a joy of playing football would be passed by osmosis from one generation to the next. Given the advancement of modern athletic equipment and training techniques as well as medical science, Ms. O’Neal should take great comfort and allow her child to follow his passion. While keeping the body safe is necessary, the development of character and the expression of youthful exuberance are even more important. The gridiron is her boy’s chosen playground where I have no doubt her crossed fingers and scrutinizing eyes will be on the sidelines.
Re: "Should I let my young son play football," Lonnae O'Neal's column, Washington Post
Monday, February 23, 2015
Wednesday, February 18, 2015
Regarding Muslim extremism's widespread violence, any savvy middle schooler could enlighten our reticent president: "Fear of a name only increases fear of the thing itself." Such was said by heroine Hermione Granger in the fantasy world of Harry Potter regarding that universal scourge named Voldermort and his minions of Death Eaters. As with the cowed characters of Harry Potter who would refer to this evil incarnate as He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named, a real life parallel can unfortunately be seen with President Obama and his administration: the specter of Islamic terrorism is the Thing-That-Must-Not-Be-Named. Words and labels have power. Indeed, one cannot effectively fight an enemy one refuses to identify. To this end, fuzzy, nebulous language displays weakness, submission and worst of all passive collaboration with naked, deadly aggression. Apparently, Mr. Obama is still on his ideological apology tour as the Middle East burns and large swaths of Asia, Europe and Africa fall into further chaos. Most of the peace-loving world, including America, will rue the day Mr. Obama stuck his head into the sand trap leaving bad actors to fill the leadership void.
Monday, February 16, 2015
In the beauty contest of vice presidential gaffes, Dan Quayle has forever relinquished his crown to the true grandmaster of stick-foot-in-mouth: Joe Biden. This is no pedestrian misstatement of spelling potato with an “e”, folks. It turns out Mr. Quayle's tongue-twisted words, at least when it comes to Mr. Biden, were prescient when he said, “What a waste it is to lose one's mind. Or not to have a mind is being very wasteful. How true that is.” Specifically, in an Iowa speech at Drake University, generally left unreported by the liberal mass media a few days ago, Mr. Biden presumably referred to former Iowa Congressmen Neal Smith as his old “butt-buddy.”
No doubt Mrs. Biden will take issue with sharing that particular piece of real estate with Mr. Smith. In any case, if a prominent Republican made similar public statements you can bet it would be front page news gleefully spun as a homosexual slur. Overnight, that conservative would be a laughingstock, smeared as a homophobe, and driven forever from political office. But when it’s done by Democrats, the silence of the liberal press is frankly deafening. It is amazing that a guy apparently not smart enough to be dog-catcher is a heartbeat away from the White House.
Friday, February 6, 2015
News anchor Brian Williams, laughably touted by some as the Walter Cronkite of our age, was never even there. Like every great fish story--often told over 12 years of being a passenger in a helicopter hit by enemy fire during the Iraq war--was not an embellishment due to a momentary faulty memory as he claims, but a real whopper: a pathologically repeated, fabrication designed no doubt to feed his inflated ego and to make him appear brave to others; like a war correspondent of old on the cutting edge of danger. But facts are pesky, inflexible things. And as any grade school student knows and could enlighten Mr. Williams concerning, his tall tale was a bold-faced lie and given his profession should have consequences. Indeed, if Mr. Williams had any guts or, God forbid, journalistic ethics--now that he has conclusively and publicly demonstrated that his personal credibility is zero--he would know that he has no business remaining the face of a major American news network and resign. But fortunately for Mr. Williams he is also no Dan Rather and as he is a creature of the liberal mass media, he and his NBC bosses--unlike the masses who tune in--live in a consequence free zone.
Thursday, February 5, 2015
Bruce Jenner: all-American then and now (re: Emily Yahr's profile, Style section, Washington Post, February 5, 2015)
I congratulate Emily Yahr on her insightful profile of the many lives of Bruce Jenner. In the seventies, as an Olympian, Mr. Jenner epitomized that age's American spirit and representation of athletic masculinity. Over the proceeding decades societal views of what it is to symbolize the American male has changed favorably to include broader definitions. Like the times, Mr. Jenner has evolved into a greater acceptance of self. Indeed, when the inner gender identity does not match one's outer appearance it is like being a prisoner in one's own body. Psychologically, I can think of nothing tougher. To compound that internal, private struggle with the very public glare of celebrity by coming out as transgender is an act of extreme courage. Despite naysayers claims that Mr. Jenner's transition is nothing more than a stunt designed to earn a few bucks, Ms. Yahr explains that his sharing of his life's journeys with the world is part and parcel of Mr. Jenner's character. And similar to his Olympic glory which inspired a past generation, Mr. Jenner's tenacious example to follow his own path will save lives of a new generation of at-risk gender-questioning young people that know nothing of his decades-old decathlon gold metal.
Note: A staggering 41% of transgender people in the United States have attempted to commit suicide, according to one survey. (nbcnews.com, 11/19/2010)
Monday, February 2, 2015
I congratulate Joseph Curl on his brilliant Political Theater column "The lesson for Hillary in Mitt's decision." His comparison of real life political figures to the fictitious title character of classic American cinema, Citizen Kane--a seriously flawed man of not only of extreme hubris and material wealth but also a certain myopic self-obsession and empathetic emotional bankruptcy--is telling. Whether or not these seemingly universal impulses of political leaders stem from some deep-seated psychological need for public adoration is interesting. However, I have no doubt that this selfsame desire has its foundation in the ego's need to control others. As another astute Washington Times columnist Monica Crawley recently opined, Ms. Clinton, the likely Democratic contender for president, would "walk over her grandmother" to succeed Mr. Obama. In the case of the Clintons, their compulsive self-serving power-seeking rises to the level of an art form; a specific parallel between them and Citizen Kane. Also, like the adulterous Citizen Kane whose political ambitions were ultimately thwarted by scandal, Ms. Clinton will have many strikes against her like age (she will be 69 in 2016), a paper thin resume of any actual accomplishments and the looming political baggage of Benghazi. Unlike Mr. Romney who has the class to step aside so that the Republicans can nominate the most viable candidate, nothing will likely dissuade Ms. Clinton. Republican detractors will be smeared as misogynists; an absurd fiction dutifully disseminated by a sycophantic liberal mass media that will cover for her at every turn. As an example, Benghazi will be portrayed as "old news" and a non-issue. Ironically, Citizen Kane, a newspaper publisher, could not muzzle the press that publically exposed his peccadilloes. Ms. Clinton will have no such problem. Like Romney, she should step aside for the good of the country: if the last six years has proven anything it is that America does not need another community-organizing Saul Alinsky liberal in the White House and the resulting continuation of cultural and geopolitical chaos.
Re. paper thin resume: As Senator, Hillary had only a total of twenty bills passed. Of those, fifteen were purely symbolic in nature. (Dick Morris: Hillary's 'Paltry' Senate Record)
Re. Saul Alinsky: In 1969, Hillary Rodham wrote a 92-page senior thesis for Wellesley College titled "There Is Only the Fight . . . ": An Analysis of the Alinsky Model. The subject was famed radical community organizer Saul Alinsky.