American Landholder

The World Cup and the “Summer of LeBron”

In Uncategorized on 11 July 2010 at 6:37 pm

This month has seen a large amount of sports headlines. The World Cup, which began in June, the “Summer of LeBron,” tennis majors, a perfect game in baseball, and any other of a myriad of events taking place in the sports world.
Spanish World Cup victory courtesy of Huffington Post
The World Cup for the first time was widely watched here in the US bringing the “beautiful game” to the top of the pecking order in American sports, a place it rarely sees. It has been incredibly exciting with the US push to get out of group play, Landon Donovan’s goal against Algeria and a host of other great moments in matches. What amazes me most though is the fact that while so many people watched the games, very few people here took the time to understand the game and appreciate it— much to the chagrin soccer (football) fans here and around the world. We Inundated with articles by sports writers who had never seen or watched a professional soccer match before. Who did not understand the kind of gentleman-like atmosphere that maintained and the various quirks that make soccer so great: the lack of replay, the finality of the referee’s whistle, exchanging of sweaters (jerseys), diving, and the like. We here in America couldn’t understand how they wouldn’t want to get it right (with regards to instant replay) or why it took so long to score. The problem is that the world loves and understands soccer. The world has a certain place in its heart for it. But the world is not like the United States. In the US we have so many sports and so much information around about them that it is overwhelming. Also, our attitude in sports is a little different. We are so insanely competitive that we do everything that we can to remove human error from sports so that all that is on display are the athletes and their talents and there is something to be said for that. With soccer though, the sport embraces the human side, that a bad call can decide the fate of an entire match, but if a team is truly worthy they will overcome the bad calls, and let’s face it everyone gets bad calls. The beauty of soccer is that it doesn’t matter how fast or strong you are, all that matters is your dexterity and creativity in handling the ball. Obviously having the skill and the physical traits is best, but some of the best players in history have been a scant 5’6″, or thereabouts. Here is a great piece by Bill Simmons, the Sports Guy, here.

The other aspect about soccer that is truly unique is how it has brought to sports an entire group of fans who aren’t your typical sports fans. Young, progressive people who normally find the business side of sports to be tiresome. This new group of fans are attracted to soccer because of its egalitarian atmosphere and the fact that money plays a far smaller part than the purity of competition and victory. While it is true that these players are paid handsomely for their talents, they seem to be far more humble and respectful and no one ever sees themselves as bigger than the game of soccer. You will never see a soccer star hold an hour long press conference/special to announce where he will next play…

LeBron James Decision Show

LeBron James does think that he is bigger than his team and the sport, hence the, “Summer of LeBron.” With his decision on July 9th he finally ended the “anguish” of the nation in a one-hour long media event in which he demonstrated how he can make the entire sports media bend to his will. It was by far the most ridiculous thing I have ever witnesses in sports and while my opinion is certainly not a unique one it is, I think, the proper one. Anyone who walked away from that special thinking better of LeBron is either six years old of a resident of Miami. This goes back to our obsession with sports. Instead of informing his team of his decision face-to-face, giving them time to make appropriate decisions, maybe go out and sign a new small forward, he told them minutes before the show and after all the best free agent options were off the board. He paid no mind to that fact that the city of Cleveland, and the state of Ohio for that matter, had supported him since he tried to enter the league as a junior in high school trying to break into the league. Instead he treated them like a stool to be stepped on to reach a greater height. The fact is while LeBron’s decision is his own he treated his city and his home as a piece of dog meat without value and discarded them with that attitude. He chose to gut an entire city and franchise on national television.He made it crystal clear with this spectacle that, at the least, he believes he is bigger than his team. A concept that is blasphemy in sports.

If LeBron truly cared for winning and felt himself as part of a team rather than a universe unto himself, instead of going to Miami to take a pay cut and “win” he could have stayed in Cleveland and taken a pay cut so that the Cavs could go out and get some more talent. It is clear that before the end of the last playoff series that LeBron had made his decision to leave, his play during those final games spoke volumes. The sad part is, the last people find out were the Cavs.

Why did he do all this? to help Dwayne Wade win a second title? If they win titles, they won’t be LeBron’s they will be Wade’s and he will go down as the guy who couldn’t hack it on his own and to be honest, I don’t think he can. He is a great player, without a doubt, but he is Charles Barkley great or Patrick Ewing great— not great enough to win a title on his own. LeBron to me is a joke. A shadow of a man. Someone who thinks he is bigger than the game of basketball and that they should just give him the championship already. For crying out loud he was crowned King without having achieved anything. He has a few MVP’s and that is it. He will go down as the most valuable loser, and that will be his legacy.

He went from this:
LeBron We Are Witnesses image
To This:
Fans burning LBJ Jersey
…in a single hour.

Justice is….

In Uncategorized on 30 June 2010 at 10:32 pm

…Mute in this case. The Elena Kagan confirmation hearings have been “raging” now for several days, and we know only one thing about her— she is a hypocrite.

Click for More Mumbling

Incorporate this…!

In Current Events, Politics, Society on 28 June 2010 at 9:30 pm

From West Facade of the Supreme Court Building -

Today, on the last day of its term, the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) ruled in favor of the gun lobby and gun rights activists in striking down the 30-year old Chicago gun ban.

This affirms that the Second Amendment of the Bill of Rights is an incorporated right.. For more on incorporation see: wikipedia.

While this is not the end of firearms legislation, according to Justice Samuel Alito the decision “limits (but by no means eliminates) their [Cities] ability to devise solutions to social problems that suit local needs and values,” it is a definite blow to those of us who believe firearms need heavy regulation.
Bang, Bang…