It’s gonna get uglier

Let me start this post by saying I was aware of the Sarah Palin effigy and I wasn’t amused by that.  I consider it to be in poor taste and supremely ignorant on several accounts.  However, the Barack Obama effigy found on the University of Kentucky campus has legitimate historical precedence as being offensive and dangerous.  I don’t want to get into a debate about hate crimes Aside: all crimes are hate crimes…they’re hateful and criminal, therefore, hate crimes. or double standards Aside: I find both instances offensive., but here in the South (or close enough to the South), a Black person hanging by noose from a tree has historical significance.

According to some information from Tolnay and Beck A Festival of Violence: An Analysis of Southern Lynchings, 1882-1930, during those years, 118 Blacks were lynched by predominantly White mobs in the state of Kentucky.  This number pales in comparison to places like Mississippi and Georgia, but is nonetheless statistically significant and morally depressing.  

Events like the Obama effigy serve as reminders of this awful period of history.  As well, to have it happen here in this state dredges up even more memories.  1930 wasn’t that long ago and the civil rights movement is even more recent history.  Plus, for better or worse, the people of Kentucky are assumed racist by the general population given this history.  There’s no need to add fuel to the fire on this one.

Effigies are popular forms of dissension for a lot of reasons.  Guy Fawkes comes to mind Aside: Look it up and there may even be humorous reasons for effigies, though I can’t think of a single one at the moment.  And had the Obama effigy been burned without hanging, or even just taped to the wall somewhere, probably not as offensive…but I believe that there was some underlying hatred here that evokes some painful images.  As such, the ignorance associated with such an event should be brought to light and punished.

See you in the funny papers!

Wading through the muck

With a mere 5 days until the election, one wonders which will be scarier Halloween or November 4.  As the onslaught of negativity continues from both sides in all elections, the undecided vote looms larger.  Now, most of us have already chosen a candidate, but the sheer numbers of people who have not yet come to a decision is worrying.  Now, the candidate that I’ve chosen, Senator Obama, has what seems to be an impressive lead going into the last days of this election season.  All the polls indicate that he is leading or tied with Senator McCain in at least eight battleground states.  However, I’m not the only kid who remembers seeing a picture of Truman holding up the infamous “Dewey defeats Truman” headline in school.  I’m also not the only kid who remembers that the last two elections were basically stolen by the Republican party.  I have my doubts about the “truthiness” of the entire election system.  I’m also not wild about the electoral college, but that’s another post entirely.  

My point is, if you’re still undecided at this point, you really need to sit down and carefully consider your options and make a choice.  Five days is a short amount of time to really make an informed decision, especially with all the mudslinging that’s going on.  I would suggest that you take a moment to go to each candidate’s website and view their positions on the issues (assuming that issues are still important to each campaign) and make up your own mind about how you feel regarding these issues.  To that end, I’m offering a link to each campaign.

  

In five days, the course of this country will be altered, regardless of who is elected.  It’s up to you to be part of that decision.  This, democracy, is what sets us apart from regimes around the world whose citizens are oppressed and persecuted.  Be a part of this process and vote for your life.

See you in the funny papers!

Running Update

Well, as I mentioned in a previous post, I did a lot of walking in Philadelphia.  And on Tuesday night, I went rock climbing with S. the Neighbor which was pretty cool.  I didn’t know if I’d enjoy it, but I had a pretty good time.  Turns out, I’m not nearly as strong as you might think.  As a matter of fact, if I needed to hang on to something for an indefinite period of time, I’m not sure I could manage.  Thank goodness for running. I can at least do that.

Since the last update, I’ve put on almost 17 miles.  My weight is down to around 208 which is a pretty great by-product of running.  And, according to the map, I’m near Middleton, IL which doesn’t even have a Wikipedia entry, so it makes you wonder what is there that was worth naming a village for.  I’ve also changed the map layout so that it’s easier to see.  You didn’t need all that topographical information anyway.  We all know that from Illinois to Colorado is pretty damn flat.

#17

So, there it is…a running update.  I was hoping to do a little more politics…but I just can’t keep up with the stupid things being said.  I mean, from Palin saying she would be “in charge of the Senate” to Bachmann starting up McCarthyism all over again, there’s just too much to cover.  I will be doing some more, but it just won’t cover everything.

Also, people asked me if I was sad about the Red Sox.  Well, yeah, a little, but y’know, you can’t go to the “magic barrel” all the time and expect there to still be fairytale dust inside.  At some point you use it all.  We came up short against a good team and a Phillies/Rays series should be very interesting.  As my mother always said, “Somebody has to lose.”  Also, I don’t want to win so often that we become like the Yankees…*blurg*  So, yeah, sad…but it was a great season and I look forward to pitchers and catchers (hopefully Varitek!) reporting in February.

See you in the funny papers!

You tell me!

Okay, so there’s a new feature here on the blogosphere called the poll and I figured since it was election season, I’d put out my own poll…maybe even two.  Here’s the first…

We’ll see how this turns out and maybe do more in the future.

See you in the funny papers!

Random Stuff

There’s a few things that have been rattling around in my head that don’t really warrant a full post, so I thought I’d gather them here in a Random Stuff grab bag of nothingness.

  • I’d prefer to not hear the word “game-changer” ever again; in baseball, in politics, in anything.
  • Craig Sager‘s jackets are frightening.
  • If you’re begging money from me, don’t be insulting.  I’m sorry that you’re in the condition, but it’s not like I personally keep you there by not giving you my change.
  • I thought that the Red Sox were goners last night…but an eight run comeback was amazing in so many ways.
  • The Phillies clinched the pennant at exactly 11:47 local time…I know, because the noise outside the hotel was incredible.
  • Speaking of noise…I think Philadelphia is probably the noisiest city I’ve ever visited.
  • My running log only shows 5 miles for the week, but trust me, I’ve walked enough for the whole month.
  • I cried at the National Constitution Center, and I’m not ashamed of that.

That’s about all that’s on my mind, really.  I’ll be home soon.

See you in the funny papers!

Prelude to the end

As I listen to the spin and the presumptions about who wins and who doesn’t on this debate, I feel compelled to add my own two cents. And, I’ll do my best to limit it to a mere two cents and not the whole wooden nickel.

In my view, Senator McCain looked whiny and desperate in this debate. For the first couple of questions, much like his running mate, he preferred to answer the questions that he wanted asked, not the questions that were actually posed. Senator Obama, on the other hand, proved capable and even-handed as he answered the questions that were asked. McCain did seem to find his stride at some point and was able to provide some coherent answers, but never really seemed to find my trust. Not to mention his continued references to Joe, the plumber from Ohio, which seemed trite and condescending. Senator Obama managed to address the American people in a controlled manner which made him seem professional and not petty. I also thought Obama did an excellent job responding to the inquiries about his relations with Ayers and ACORN which have absolutely nothing to do with the economy, healthcare, or any of the myriad issues that are affecting people like myself…or even Joe, the plumber.

If I had to pick a winner, naturally, I’d have to go with Barack Obama, and I would hope that this is based on a true understanding of who would make the best president and not my own selfish desires. Senator Obama, I believe, represents the hearts and minds of the American people and is capable of bringing about real change in this country. John McCain seems to be the sort of person who says all the right things, but would just as soon stab you in the back if he thought he could profit from it. McCain seems like the Judas Iscariot of this presidential campaign. Aside: And, NO, that is in NO WAY an analogy of Obama as Christ before all you right-wing nuts start digging in for that battle.

Also, I think Senator Obama made another excellent point, one that I think bears examining in greater depth. No one is pro-abortion, there is pro-life and pro-choice. Pro-life means that you think that people should not have the option of choosing to have an abortion. Pro-choice means that you think that people should have that option. Neither of these stances on this extremely politically-charged debate have anything to do with being for abortions.

There were several excellent issues in this debate and I hope that the undecided voters Aside: because that’s who’s really deciding this election now watched intently and are making wise and intelligent decisions based on what they saw and heard this evening. I also hope that voters who had their minds made up were able to listen closely to both candidates and make certain that what they feel in their hearts is really what they want for their country.

Finally, I know we’re all ready for this election to end…some more than others, if for no other reason so that I can go back to writing about exercise and other nonsense. Just a few more weeks and, hopefully, we can all unite on a course that will lead this country back to greatness, regardless of which candidate wins.

See you in the funny papers!

City of Brotherly Love

I’m in Philadelphia and I’m enjoying it quite a bit. The television in the hotel really sucks…which gives me that much more reason to get out and see the sights. I haven’t seen everything, particularly the more historical aspects of the city, as I’m waiting for C.’s conference to be complete so we can enjoy it together. I have, however, walked this city up and down, east and west, for 2 solid days. LOVE statue That might explain why my run yesterday was so lackluster. I’m on the 1:00/1:00 plan this week, and yesterday morning’s workout was the pits. I was unable to keep to the intervals after the first 15 minutes and I only ended up getting in 2.5 in 33 minutes. But, I’ve been Delaware to Schuylkill and several points in between. I’m uploading some photos so that you can see what I’ve seen so far…but I wanted to write in and let you know I haven’t disappeared. Also, check out the movies and events pages…they’ve been updated.

See you in the funny papers!

P.S. I’d also like to nominate Manayunk, PA as the unofficial running capital of Pennsylvania. Tons of runners there last night…TONS!