Saturday, April 24, 2004

A football mentality 

About ten years back, I was listening to a football game on the radio. I am a fan of the perennially-hapless-with-occasional-sparks-of-greatness Missouri Tigers football team. The game I was listening to was the infamous "Fifth Down" game against Missouri's then-first-ranked arch rivals, the Colorado Buffaloes.

Bill McCartney was the CU coach at the time. The game was a wild one, and Missouri was in the lead with seconds left. Colorado had the ball near the goal line, and a touchdown was needed for them to steal a win. A fabulous, fantastic finish, and all Missouri had to do to knock off a Number One team was to keep them out of the end zone one last time.

I don't remember exactly how the sequence of the last set of downs went--but I know this much. At one point, to kill the clock, the Colorado QB spiked the ball. Unfortunately for Colorado, he spiked it on FOURTH DOWN. Even more unfortunately, for Missouri, the OFFICIALS FAILED TO NOTE THIS FACT and give the ball back to Missouri. Granted, if a single Missouri player, let alone their coach, hadn't been caught up in the tenseness of the moment, they might have brought this to the officials' attention, and ended the damn game. They didn't.

Next play, Colorado scores a touchdown and wins the game. On FIFTH DOWN. Later, McCartney admitted that HE knew they'd won on a mistake, but he kept his mouth shut.

Here's my point.

Bill McCartney is a dedicated born-again Christian. He is one of the founders of the Promise Keepers. Telling the truth and doing the right thing are concepts that he pounded into his players; he also makes a shitload of money as a hired public speaker every week, expounding on these ideas as a much-in-demand college football version of Bill Bennett.

But he conveniently forgot to tell the truth when it really mattered--when it would have cost him and his team not just a game, but a share of the National Championship later that year.

He is a hypocrite, and so is any Republican thug who stoops to cheat in order to win and maintain political power in this country. There are many. Many of these think they are doing God's work. They think it's God's will that they lord it over us (Pun intended? Not intended? Who knows? Not me).

For example:

Republicans fined for posing as Democrats


HHS refuses to release Medicare estimates


Catholic leaders call for excommunication of Kerry, but not Ridge, Pataki or Giuliani

See? Hypocrites, every single one who refuses to denounce Bush for his obscene budget deficits, overreaching tax cuts and even Bush's breaking the law to achieve his ends. Hypocrites, every single one.

It's Fifth Down, people. We're screaming at the officials. Are they listening?


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