Quick Hits – January 29, 2018

Let Bannon Speak!

God! I hate liberals – especially those of the collegiate variety. And the fact that I’m socially liberal myself isn’t about to change that sentiment.

The reason for that latest blanket statement is, University of Chicago Booth School of Business Professor, Luigi Zingales, invited former Trump advisor, Steve Bannon, to speak at the school on “the economic benefits of globalization and immigration.”

Just like clockwork, dozens of students and professors immediately took to the Quad, or whatever the heck they call it at the U of C, armed with signs demanding Bannon be banned. This, of course, forced Zingales to defend his invitation by stating the far-too-obvious:

“I can hardly think of a more important issue for new citizens and business leaders of the world than the backlash against globalization and immigration. Whether you agree with him or not (and I personally do not), Mr. Bannon has come to interpret and represent this backlash in America. For this reason, I invited Mr. Bannon to a debate on these issues with our faculty.”

Ban Bannon

Exactly! Like him or not, Bannon has made quite the impact on this country and its policies, and it would be fascinating to see him face off against folks who not only sit on the other side of the fence, but know how to engage in a civil debate.

University officials added:

“The University of Chicago is deeply committed to upholding the values of academic freedom, the free expression of ideas, and the ability of faculty and students to invite the speakers of their choice.”

Yep! Let him talk!

Because whether it’s Bannon, Milos Yiannopoulos, Anne Coulter or any of our other current fun-loving rightwing radicals, the best thing we can do is let them speak. I understand no one will ever dissuade their faithful, but rational people will be provided with an opportunity to see these far less-than-stellar individuals for who they really are!

No safe zone necessary!

 

Every now and then, Illinois gets it right!

To wit, I wholeheartedly support State Rep Carol Sente (D-Vernon Hills) who’s sponsored the Dave Duerson Act to Prevent CTE which would eliminate organized tackle football for children 12 and under.

You may recall that Duerson is the former Chicago Bears defensive back who committed suicide at the age of 50 after suffering the debilitating effects of chronic traumatic encephalopathy. He shot himself in the chest so his brain could be studied for a link to the repeated head trauma he suffered as an 11-year NFL standout.

Duerson

Dave Duerson

First, have you seen the size of some of those 11 and 12 year-olds these days? When I coached travel soccer I ran into some six-plus-footers who outweighed me!

Second, having had to avail myself of physical therapy more than once over the last four years, it astounds me how many middle schoolers were being seen for sports related injuries. And when we’re talking about developing bodies, that’s never a good thing.

Not to mention all of the concussions!

Sente issued the following statement:

“We all want kids to have fun playing football and to learn to play the game the right way early on, but the overwhelming data and powerful stories of our supporters here today show the risks of playing tackle football before turning 12 just aren’t worth it.”

I couldn’t have said it better myself, so let’s hope this bill takes flight!

 

And while we’re at it…

…though I’m the last one to be a proponent of the nanny state, it’s time for Illinois and every state to start requiring regular inspections for home schooled children. I’m not talking about anything like regulations as rigorous as our school buildings have to pass, just quarterly visits that guarantee that everyone’s doing alright.

This is not an effort to intimidate people into marching to the same drummer. Considering what it takes to get a teaching degree, I’m not the biggest home schooling advocate, but after the recent California debacle in which authorities freed 13 shackled and tortured children who were ostensibly being “home schooled,” it’s far too easy for these kids to fall through the cracks.

perris-couple-wedding-photo

This conversation has come up before, but all of the previously proposed bills died a slow and quiet death at the hands of the home school lobby. But this might be the perfect time to give it another shot.

And if home schooling advocates are smart, they’ll welcome this opportunity by proposing their own set of reasonable rules so legislators won’t unduly come down on them.

It will be interesting to see where this goes.

 

Do the right thing!

Congratulation to the Cleveland Indians for officially announcing they will retire their Chief Wahoo logo in 2019. The organization has been moving away from that racist rendition of a Native American for past few years.

Cleveland

I know there are traditionalists who think this kind of thing is OK, but imagine the fury that would ensue if a sports team decided to call themselves the Chicago Jews, Milwaukee Mexicans, or the Indianapolis Negroes.

Native Americans are people, not mascots.

Now if only the Washington Redskins would finally see the light.

One thought on “Quick Hits – January 29, 2018

  1. Maybe Illinois should start enforcing truancy laws already on the books before creating a law to inspect homeschoolers. If schools and counties claim it’s too expensive to have a truancy office and/or prosecute self centered parents who can’t get their elementary kid to school regularly, how will the state find funds to inspect homeschoolers?

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