Monday, August 23, 2004

Pussification of Our Youth 

Testicles: The New Endangered Species

I saw this article called Recess Gets Regulated and just shook my head in disbelief. Maybe not disbelief, as this type of Nanny State protectionism ("Save anyone that may have their widdle feelings hurt") is happening with more and more regularity.

It seems that school districts in Sacramento, California area have decided that anything that doesn't resemble a tea-and-bisquit party must be summarily banned. No rough-housing. No touching. No pushing. No fun allowed.

Concerned about safety and injuries and worried about bullying, violence, self-esteem and lawsuits, school officials have clamped down on the traditional games from years past.

My BS antenna always goes nuts whenever someone uses "self-esteem" as their rationale for change. Their concept of a good idea is to try and eliminate a kid's natural instincts to, well, be a kid. My read on this is that it's another step in an attempt to socially neuter boys - Pussification.

Young boys have an incredible amount of energy pulsing through their bodies. In the past, it was vented through physical activity, namely recess. After being cooped up in a classroom for a couple of hours, you were set free for 20 minutes, allowed to run and bump and shove and scrap. You then got a drink of water, took a leak, and were ready for another couple of hours of classroom time.

The problem is, most schools are administered and taught by women. A lot of these women see recess as a time when those little animals - boys - display characteristics that are so - unlady-like. That's just not acceptable. They didn't need to run around when they were little girls, so neither do the boys of today. And slowly, but surely, things that have traditionally been in place to give boys a chance to blow off some steam are being eliminated or modified to such a degree that they're no longer fun (Isn't that what recess is all about? Fun?).

Teachers are then shocked when a boy is unable to stay still and concentrate in class.

Now, instead of allowing this natural cycle to take place, we've replaced it with drugs. Ritalin is the top of the hit parade. In one fell swoop, we're castrating our male population and teaching everyone to "play nice". Our boys are walking around in a drug induced stupor. They're losing all of their drive, their ambition, their creativeness, their aggressiveness that makes them "push the envelope". They're being turned into little girls.

Of course, there's nothing wrong with little girls. I married a grown-up one. But little girls come at things from a different perspective. Not better, not worse, just different. They're wired differently from little boys, just as they should be. That means every problem can be solved from differing perspectives, giving us more and better solutions.

What these teachers are doing is turning us into a nice, creamy, fluffy, soft-centered candy bar (no nuts, please). Instead of the "X Generation", they'll be the, "3 Musketteers Generation", and I'm not talking about literature.

Do you think that's extreme? How's this for extreme:

During lunch recess one recent afternoon, yard supervisor Janice Hudson spotted a first-grader pushing a girl on the swing.

"Do not push," Hudson told the student. "Let her push herself, please."

"One person can be a little stronger than the other," she said as she walked away.

Let her push herself? Aside from the absurdity of the rebuke, the message was clear. Do you think that other person may have been a boy?

The logical solution would be to address individual problems as they occur. If there is a bully, punish the bully. If someone is too rough, make them sit out the next game. That's how problems in the real world are handled. But that's not the endgame, is it? It's to make boys more "civilized", and they're using these feeble excuses as their means to an end.

These school administrators need to be stopped before testicles - literally and figuratively - become an endangered species.


Wednesday, August 18, 2004


They buried a boy today.

He was 18, so most would likely call him a man. But he was only a year older than my oldest son - my oldest boy - so he seems like a boy to me.

His name was Terrance Kelly. He was a black kid from Richmond, California. Rough territory. He'd found a way out of the death and drugs and misery that were a part of that city. He was on his way out!

He was a star athlete, but he had more than that going for him. He had a strong father that pushed him to excel. His father drove him from Richmond to Concord each day for high school until he was old enough to drive himself. His father instilled into Terrance the importance of an education, and the doors it would open. His father knew attending this high school was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. He grabbed that brass ring with both hands.

Still, his way out was through sports. Football in particular. He was a star amongst stars. You see, last season, he was voted the Most Valuable Player for the De La Salle Spartans. De La Salle has not lost a football game since the early 1990's. They have won 151 games in a row - a national record they destroyed years ago.

When I heard the news on the radio on the way to work, I was stunned. I had the opportunity to see him play the last 3 years when De La Salle played against my son's high school. Terrance was incredible even as a sophomore and unbelievable during his senior season.

Playing for De La Salle is no picnic. Players must agree to - no, commit to - a 49 week training schedule, strict academic standards, and a strict personal conduct code - no jewelry or trash talk is allowed. "It's our way, or the highway." Commitment. Ethics. Personal Pride.

Still, he excelled. And they buried that boy today.

Just two days before he was to leave for The University of Oregon with a full scholarship, he drove to a home to pick up his younger brother. It seems that leaving the 'hood didn't sit well with some. Some who had been his friends. Some who had been helped by Terrance into using sports as a means to leverage their way out of the poor streets. They put three bullets into his chest as he sat in the car.

He had found his way out, and yet they buried that boy today.


Monday, August 16, 2004

World Poker Tour? 

Read 'em and weep.....

OK, as I discussed a while back, I think politics in the US are becoming too divisive for this country. Here's a chuckle I received from a friend via email. For equal opportunity, if someone sends me a Kerry joke, I'll be happy to post it too. It's just gotta be funny.

Transcript of The Editors' regular Saturday-night poker game with
Dick Cheney, 6/19/04. Start tape at 12:32 AM.

The Editors: We'll take three cards.

Dick Cheney: Give me one.

Sounds of cards being placed down, dealt, retrieved, and rearranged
in hand. Non-committal noises, puffing of cigars.

TE: Fifty bucks.

DC: I'm in. Show 'em.

TE: Two pair, sevens and fives.

DC: Not good enough.

TE: What do you have?

DC: Better than that, that's for sure. Pay up.

TE: Can you show us your cards?

DC: Sure. One of them's a six.

TE: You need to show all your cards. That's the way the game is

Colin Powell: Ladies and gentlemen. We have accumulated overwhelming
evidence that Mr. Cheney's poker hand is far, far better than two
pair. Note this satellite photo, taken three minutes ago when The
Editors went to get more chips. In it we clearly see the back sides
of five playing cards, arranged in a poker hand. Defector reports
have assured us that Mr. Cheney's hand was already well advanced at
this stage. Later, Mr. Cheney drew only one card. Why only one card?
Would a man without a strong hand choose only one card? We are
absolutely convinced that Mr. Cheney has at least a full house.

Tim Russert: Wow. Colin Powell really hit a homerun for the
Administration right there. A very powerful performance. My dad
played a lot of poker in World War 2, and he taught me many things
about life. Read my book.

TE: He's extremely good at Power Point. But we would like to see the
cards, or else we can't really be sure he has anything to beat two
pair. We don't think he would lie to us, but ... well, it is a very
rich pot.

Jonah Goldberg: Liberal critics of Mr. Cheney's poker hand contend
that "he doesn't have anything." Oh, really, liberal critics? Cheney
has already showed them the six of clubs, and yet these liberals
persist in saying he has "nothing". Why do liberals consider the six
of clubs to be "nothing"? Is it because the six of clubs is black?

DRUDGE REPORT***** The Drudge Report has learned that Dick Cheney has
a royal flush, hearts. Developing ...

TE: Perhaps if you could just show us a subset of your cards which
beat 2 pair? Or tell us exactly what your hand is?

DC: We will show you our cards after we have collected the pot. It is
important that things be done in this order, otherwise the foundation
of our entire poker game will be destroyed.

TE: We aren't sure ...

DC: (collecting pot) Very good. And here are my cards. A straight

Judith Miller: Dick Cheney has revealed a straight flush, confirming
his pre-collection claims about beating two pair.

TE: That's not a flush! Those cards are of different suits. It's not
a flush.

Mark Steyn: When will it end? Now liberal critics complain that Dick
Cheney's cards are not all the same suit. Naturally, these are the
same liberals who are always whining about a lack of diversity in
higher education. It seems like segregation is OK with these
liberals, as long as it damages Republicans.

REPORT***** A witness has come forward claiming that The Editors
engage in racial profiling in blog-linking. Developing ...

TE: Wait! It's not even a straight! You've got a eight and ten of
hearts, a six of clubs, and the seven and five of diamonds. You have
a ten high. That's nothing.

Sean Hannity: Well, well, well. In another sign of liberal
desperation, liberals now complain that a ten high is "nothing".
Does ten equal zero in liberal mathematics? That would explain a lot.

Robert Novak: It's a perfectly valid poker hand. Apparently, liberals
have never heard of a "skip straight". It's a kind of straight, just
with one card missing. But if you skip around the missing nine, it's
a straight.

Alan Colmes: Mother says I mustn't play poker.

TE: There is no such thing as a "skip straight".

Brit Hume: It seems like some people are still playing poker like
it's September 10th. Back then, you needed to have all your cards in
order to claim a straight. But, as we learned on that day, sometimes
you won't have perfect knowledge. Sometimes you have to learn to
connect the dots, and see the patterns which are not visible to
superficial analysis of the type favored by the CIA and the State
Department. Dick Cheney's skip straight is a winning poker hand for
the post-9/11 world.

Rush Limbaugh: Do The Editors have two pairs, or a pair of twos?
First they say one thing, then another. What are they hiding?

Andrew Sullivan: Dick Cheney never said he had a straight. He was
very careful about this. His cards can form many different hands.
None of these hands alone can beat a pair of twos; but, taken
together, the combination of all possible hands presents a more
compelling case for taking the pot than simply screaming "Pair of
twos! Pair of twos!" as unprincipled liberal critics of the Vice
President so often do.

REPORT***** Did The Editors claim to have "a pair of Jews"? Are they
anti-Semites as well as racists? Developing ...

Zell Miller: As a lifelong liberal Democrat, I believe Dick Cheney,
and I hate liberals and Democrats.

William Safire: Why are liberals so obsessed by Dick Cheney's poker
hand? The pot has been taken, the deal is done. If liberals are upset
that we are no longer playing by the Marquis of Queensbury patty-cake
poker rules, they clearly lack the stomach to play poker in the post-
September 11th environment. And why do they never complain about
Saddam Hussein's poker playing, which was a thousand times worse?

Christopher Hitchens: The Left won't be happy until the pot is
divided up equally between Yassar Arafat, Osama bin Laden, and
Hitler. Orwell would have seen this.

Ann Coulter: Why do liberals object so strenuously to the idea of
conservatives having a "straight"? Perhaps because it doesn't fit in
with the radical homosexual/Islamist agenda they hold so dear?

Report of the Bipartisan Commission on Poker Hands: There is no such
thing as a "skip straight".

DC: I have access to poker rules that the Commission doesn't, and so
I know for a fact that the cards in my hand are all intimately

George W. Bush: Dick Cheney is telling the truth. I'm a nice man who
would drink a beer with you.

Vladimir Putin: I dealt Dick Cheney three aces and two kings.

DC: My deal.


Monday, August 09, 2004

A House Divided 

Too Late?

I was over at Vinny's place last week, and participated in a thread on how Kerry would or would not have acted during Bush's infamous "7 minutes" that were so highly publicized in Michael Moore's "Fahrenheit 9/11" docu-drama (I will not call it a documentary). The discussion got pretty heated, when one of the participants, Vickie, made this observation:
This whole charade has become insane. Most of the population of the US is squarely divided between the drug-induced coma that is Bush and the lying-about-his-Vietnam-service Kerry (or as they seem to be usually described). I used to be so actively political and enjoyed a passionate discussion, especially during election years. This year has taken the cake. The shitflinging, the arrogance of both sides, the insidious name-calling by everybody (myself included) has taken its own personal toll on me. I rarely comment anymore on politics because it has saddened me to see to what depths we have sunk, digging for whatever slime and infestation we can find on both men and slinging it into the faces of our opponents. We are the most divided I can remember in decades, and our house divided is not standing well by itself. We don’t need the terrorists to beat us. We are doing a spectacular job of it ourselves.
That statement hit me like a ton of bricks.

I consider myself a political junkie. Being a libertarian-leaning Independent, I'm considered a pinko-commie by my predominantly Republican family. I regularly start political "discussions" at the Christmas, Thanksgiving and Easter dinner table. I love getting into heated political discussions.

And so it was when I discovered blogs. OH. MY. GOD. Hundreds, thousands of people out "there" that were political junkies just like me, all with an opinion, all with a frame of reference. It was awesome.

I then started seeing some of the anger, the vitriol, the hate that was starting to seep from a number of these sites. Bush = Hitler. Kerry Faked Everything. Bush Lied. Kerry The Flip-Flop King. VRWC. Left-Leaning Media.

And I got drawn into it. This is my first election (I've been voting since 1980 -Reagan, Reagan, Bush, Clinton, Clinton, Browne) where I'm not voting for someone. I'm voting against Bush. That in and of itself is troubling to me. There are many on the right that will vote for Bush, regardless of what he does that is against their core principles (fiscal responsibility, border control, etc) because they are so against Kerry.

What happened to "talking up" your guy, not slinging shit at your opponent? This stuff gets started and because of the 10,000 cable channels and the Internet, a negative rumor - even an outright lie - will spread like a proverbial wildfire. The target will have to spend countless hours and resources fighting this fire, and in return, will start one of their own to keep their opponent off balance. We, the voting public, are left with relying on sites such as www.factcheck.org and wondering what is true, or at least less of a lie.

I've noted on other sites - never before here - that my wife and I are seriously considering leaving the US when we retire. My hope is to retire in 13 more years - just after my 58th birthday. I fear this path our country has taken - caused by both the left and the right - may have too much momentum to stop by that time.

I've said that I will do all that I can to bring some heated civility to this whole process, including my own words and actions. But I'm not optimistic at this point. We are truly becoming a house divided. That frightens and saddens me at the same time.


Thursday, August 05, 2004

Some Clear Thinking 

Chet over at The American Way posted this Bill Of No Rights from Libertarian Lewis Napper.

How do we get this thing ratified? Or at least required reading in all government assistance offices......?


Tuesday, August 03, 2004

Just Thought I'd Share.... 

While suturing a laceration on the hand of a 75-year-old rancher (whose hand had been caught in a gate while working cattle), a doctor and the old man were talking about George W. Bush being in the White House.

The old Texan said, "Well, ya know, Bush is a 'post turtle'." Not knowing what the old man meant, the doctor asked him what a post turtle was.

The old man said, "When you're driving down a country road and you come across a fence post with a turtle balanced on top, that's a post turtle."

The old man saw a puzzled look on the doctor's face, so he continued to explain, "You know he didn't get there by himself, he doesn't belong there, he doesn't know what to do while he's up there, and you just want to help the poor stupid bastard get down."


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