Friday, July 08, 2011

A Tragedy of Unintended Circumstances

A Tragedy of Unintended Circumstances
People in Arlington Texas thought they were going to see a baseball game yesterday. Instead they saw a man die. And now the rest of the world is trying to find fault and nail blame. People have been going to baseball games for decades now. But life’s a funny thing. Sometimes through the fault of nobody a whim, an odd twist of fate causes bad things to happen.
How it happened was this. Toward the end of the second inning, Josh Hamilton, a Texas Rangers outfielder, saw an unaccounted for ball in the outfield. On an impulse, an impulse inspired by generosity and a desire to please the fans, he tossed it into the outfield bleachers. Back in the old days, the wall underneath the bleachers was the edge of the outfield. But because of the interference of overzealous fans with balls still in play, many fields, including the Ballpark in Arlington established a buffer zone that would prevent fans from snatching a fly ball that maybe could be caught. When Hamilton tossed the ball into the stands, it was with the idea I am sure that someone would catch it and take it home as a cherished souvenir.
Instead what happened was that a man, with his young son in the front row, reached for the ball, caught it briefly and then lost his balance going head first over the railing to the area between the stands and the outfield wall. Fans and players watched in horror. Fans near the young boy held him to prevent his view of his seriously injured father. A relief pitcher heard the man ask someone to take care of his son as he was carried away on the gurney by EMT’s. Sadly, the man died of cardiac arrest.
To say the man’s family is distraught is an understatement. But in this case the fans and players were also witnesses to the tragedy. Knowing the basic decency of Nolan Ryan as a person, it’s a sure bet that the Rangers organization will take care of this boy and his family. Unfortunately down the line lawyers are going to come into play. They will sue the Rangers. They will sue the Ballpark in Arlington. They will sue Josh Hamilton. And because of the way our courts are these days, they will win. The end result will be that other than homeruns hit into the stands, major league baseball, and maybe even other sports as well, will cease launching tee-shirts, souvenirs and yes, baseballs, into the stands. Those days are gone.
In the aftermath, we are going to have to start thinking about how far we are going to provide a safety net for the individuals at sporting events or in life in general. Nobody ever wants to see anyone hurt, but people get run over by cars every day with nobody suggesting we stop driving. People do bear some responsibility for their actions even when things turn out badly. Life is a chancy thing. Anyone can be hurt at any time. And while this does fit the definition of freak accident, it’s not the only one. People have fallen, been pushed or stumbled over railings at almost any ballpark or stadium you care to name. Going to any event has its own inherent risks. That so many of us seem ignorant of that fact points to how safe our society in general must be. But it’s not perfect and short of wrapping us in bubble wrap and locking us in our houses, there’s no way we can prevent every single accident. That’s the nature of accidents. Life comes with no guarantees. Lawyers and courts and countless others try to mitigate that fact. But it is a fact and the sooner we all stop seeking to blame, the sooner we can move on as a society.

By Ellen K, July 8,2011

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

And So It Begins....

During the last presidential election and other liberal and frequently paid for posters showed up at a wide range of websites. They were almost uniform in the messaged they spread. And the messages were frequently slanderous, profane and oriented toward intimidating opposition and spreading an agenda based line. After the election they went away which leads me to think they were more or less hired guns. So as we wheel from May to June suddenly attacks, vile epithets, absolute misdirection have showed up on website. It's one thing when it's just a blog, but it gets to the point of idiocy when a huge news organization indulges.

People like to point fingers at Fox News, but let me introduce you to the censorship a Reuters. Reuters news group has a comment function on their news site and the only qualification is that it must "further the story." They had a story, which was reposted on RealClearPolitics, regarding the NEA's endorsement of Obama, which is hilarious when you consider they don't even know who else is running. I posted the following response:

"I am a teacher in a right to work state. This group does not represent me. Many of those in the rank and file of this union do not feel they are represented by the agenda or platforms proposed. It is worthwhile to remember that union leadership does not always represent the membership. If you will recall the AMA and AARP both supported Obama's healthcare bill over the objections of many of their members."

I don't see anything objectionable in that response and it did forward the story as it discussed how unions don't always represent the views of individuals. But, not only did they not post the comment, they have banned me. When you look at their censorship page it is loosely worded and quite frankly flippant in their attitude. This tells me two things-Reuters is in the tank for liberals, and they don't want to hear any objections. Free press? Ha!

Friday, July 01, 2011

A Map To Remember

Go ahead, look at the link. If this is not the most depressing and terrifying graphic sequence you have ever seen, then you really do not understand and/or are possibly a liberal.