Friday, April 20, 2007

Things in the sporting world that annoy me sometimes

I was flipping through the radio today and came across Cal Ripken, Jr on Jim Rome. I respect Cal Ripken a lot and yeah, I guess his streak of 2000-whatever games in a row was pretty awesome but the caller I heard reminded me of why I sometimes get annoyed by that.
It went something like this:
"Yeah, uh, hey, Cal. I've been stuck in the same job for about 10 years now and I don't like it. But, I used to go to the ballpark with my dad and watch you play and I learned from you the value of going to work every day and all of that. And I just wanted to say that was a really valuable lesson for my life."

Hmm, perhaps a more valuable lesson might have been getting off your ass and doing something to get a better job. Now, maybe his circumstances are such that he can't do that, etc, but why call in and act like it took Cal Ripken PLAYING BASEBALL to teach you the value of going to your crappy job every day. He was making millions of dollars a year to PLAY BASEBALL! There are probably hundreds of thousands of jobs that are way harder than playing baseball and people do them for a lot, lot less money. Now, I'm not saying those people should be paid those kind of wages for a job that just about anybody could do but just stop pretending like Ripken is this great hero that can teach us all sorts of valuable lessons because he never took a day off or got hurt PLAYING BASEBALL.

My other rant involves all of the ridiculous coverage of the NFL Draft and, specifically, the admission of three of the potential top picks that they had smoked pot before. I mean, this was literally dissected for minutes at a time on every singles show like this was some major character flaw.

Not that I would do anything irresponsible like promote drug use on this blog (Happy 4/20, by the way!) but what is the percentage of college students that try pot and go on to become every profession imaginable with not a single scrape with the law in their lives? Why, you might even grow up to become president seeing as Bush, Kerry, Gore, and Clinton have all admitted to smoking pot. How many of these ESPN guys have smoked pot before? Can someone dig up that information?

Is this really that huge of a "character issue" when you have someone like Pacman Jones "making it rain" and then beating up strippers? It's frustrating to me that something like that is so easily lumped in with other character issues like domestic violence, illegal guns, or driving under the influence. Those are character issues that have real impacts on others, not smoking pot in college.

The overarching point on all of this is that there's really no reason for marijuana to be illegal anyway seeing as it a) is not that harmful (in fact the lastest study showed that THC slowed cancerous growths in mice), b) is tried by large percentages of people in this country, c) incarcerates nonviolent people costing governments billions, d) leads to other violent crime because there's so much money to be made off of it on the black market.

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