Tag Archives: bullies

Morning Ethics Warm-up: 8/16/17

GOOD MORNING!

1. I’m heading to Boston and Fenway Park in a few hours to meet with two of my high school classmates and together pay our respects to the 1967 Boston Red Sox, the spiritual beginning of Red Sox Nation, and a group of men, then barely more than boys, who had as profound an effect on my life and view of it as anything I have ever experienced.

It’s the 50th Anniversary of that amazing team and the heart-stopping pennant race it won against all odds, in a four team race that came down to the final game of the regular season. I mean heart-stopping literally: the team wasn’t called “The Cardiac Kids” for nothing. TWO of my father’s colleagues at the Boston Five Savings Bank died of heart attacks while attending Red Sox games, during one of the 9th inning desperation rallies for which the team was famous. The only reason I didn’t perish in like fashion is because I was just 16 years old.

Why was this team, and that summer 50 years ago, so important to me? I don’t have time or space to answer that question well, and you’d probably wonder what I was babbling on about anyway. A 2017 film by Major League Baseball called “The Impossible Dream” does a fair job of explaining it, but it’s too short to do the job right.

I had listened to, watched or attended every Boston Red Sox game for five years, as the team lost and lost. From those bad teams, followed weakly by the city in those days, in a crumbling old park that seemed destined to be abandoned and torn down, I learned that winning wasn’t everything, that loyalty wasn’t easy, that Hemingway was right, and that baseball was about courage, humility, perseverance, doing your job every day, sacrifice, and hope, as well as usually losing at the end. That summer of 1967 taught me that hope is worth the effort even though hope is usually dashed by the ice water of reality, that you should never give up, that miracles do happen, and that nothing is as wonderful as when a community is united in a single, inspirational goal, no matter what that goal might be…and that you should never be afraid to give everything you have in pursuit of a mission, even when it is likely that you will fail.

I learned difficult, discouraging lessons, too. When an errant pitch hit Red Sox right-fielder Tony Conigliaro in the face on August 18, 1967, it was the beginning of a lesson that revealed its tragic last chapter 23 years later. That one taught me that life is horribly, frightening unpredictable, and that we envy others at our peril. It taught me that we need to do what we can to accomplish as much good as we can as quickly as we can, because we may lose our chance forever at any moment.

Tony C, as he was and is known as, was a beautiful, charismatic, local kid, the idol of Boston’s huge Italian-American community,  in his fourth season with his home town team at the age of 22. He dated movie stars; he recorded pop songs; he had a natural flair of the dramatic, and was destined for the Hall of Fame. One pitch took it all away. Although he had two comebacks and played two full seasons facing major league fastballs with a hole in his retina and his field of vision, Tony was never the same. After his final attempt to keep playing failed at the age of 30, he became a broadcaster, and at 37 was seemingly on the way to stardom again in 1982 when he suffered a massive, inexplicable heart attack—Tony  did not smoke, and had no family history of heart problems– that left him brain damaged until his death in 1990.

As Henry Wiggin, the star pitcher protagonist of the novel, play and movie “Bang the Drum Slowly” observes as he  reflects on the death of his catcher and roommate, everyone is dying, and we have to remember to be good to each other. But it’s so hard. Ethics is hard. The ethics alarms ring faintly when we are about the task of living, or not at all…

At the end of the story, the narrator, the best friend of the catcher (but not really that close a friend) recalls how quickly everyone on the baseball team went back to their selfish ways after their teammate went home to die Even the narrator, who was the leader of the effort to make the catcher feel loved and appreciated in his last days, ruefully recalls his own failing. The catcher had asked him a favor, just to send him a World Series program (the team won the pennant after he had become too ill to play), and he had forgotten to mail it until it was too late. How hard would it have been, the narrator rebukes himself, to just put it in an envelope and mail it? Why are we like that, he wonders?

1967 was the beginning of my exploration of that mystery too.

So I am going to Boston for the 30 minute ceremony. I can’t even stay for the game; I have a seminar to teach tomorrow morning, and the last flight out of Logan is at 9 PM. There will probably be just a small contingent from the Cardiac Kids: most of them are dead now, or too infirm even to walk onto the field. But Yaz will be there, and Gentleman Jim Lonborg; Rico Petrocelli, Mike Andrews, and maybe even Hawk Harrelson  and Reggie Smith. I will be there to say thank-you, that’s all.

And to show that I remember. Continue reading

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Filed under "bias makes you stupid", Arts & Entertainment, Citizenship, Ethics Alarms Award Nominee, Ethics Dunces, Government & Politics, History, Journalism & Media, Leadership, Race, Rights, Social Media, Sports, Unethical Tweet

More Inaugeration Ethics: The Hero, The Dunce, And The Weenie…Whoops, Make That A Dunce And TWO Weenies

 

inaugeration-dunces

The Ethics Hero was going to be Jennifer Holliday, the big-voiced diva who stopped the Broadway hit “Dreamgirls” with her solo, “I’m not going.” She had agreed to sing at the Inauguration, telling the Associated Press that her decision to participate was a way to welcome the American people to an event that should be about unifying the country.

Which is, of course, what it is.

She then faced a vicious response to her patriotic and principled decision, with critics calling for a boycott of her music, labeling her as an “Uncle Tom,” promising that her career was over and telling her to kill herself. Most vociferous of the bullies were those from the LGBT community, which has managed to convince itself that Trump is a foe despite the fact that nothing in his speeches or record suggest that he is. But he is a Republican, and thus presumptively biased. (Assuming anyone is less than admirable based on group membership is bigotry, but in this case, the argument goes, good bigotry.)

Rather than stand up for what she said was right, Holiday whined, and capitulated:

“How could I have this much hate spewing at me, and I haven’t even done anything? I guess it’s not like those old days when political views were your own and you had freedom of speech. … We live in a different time now and a decision to go and do something for America is not so clear-cut anymore.”
The way to stand up for the values you claim to embrace, you sniveling coward, is to refuse to be bullied out of supporting them, and opposing the forces of divisiveness and hate.Ah, but performers who are willing to resist peer pressure and the howls of the mob are rarer than Florida panthers, so Jennifer grovelled instead, in a nauseating open letter:

O MY BELOVED LGBT COMMUNITY:

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Ethics Hero: Fox News

How gloriously ironic it will be it if Fox News is the architect of the tipping point that finally causes Donald Trump’s passionate supporters—you know, the ones who don’t mind if he mocks veterans and the disabled, who don’t notice that he is a substance-free blowhard, who he boasts  wouldn’t care if he shot someone dead in cold blood—to realize they have been deluded fools…

Trump, you see, is pulling out of Thursday’s Fox News debate because he is afraid of Megyn Kelly, who properly challenged him on his habitual misogyny in the first one, prompting Trump to aim his ugly sexism at her. Trump has been sending cheap shots and insults Kelly’s way ever since, and has recently been complaining that she has a “conflict of interest” and is biased against him, and thus should not moderate Thursday’s debate. He should know that every American, including journalists, who have the sense God gave an echidna, are exactly as biased in the sense that they don’t want this blathering, posturing narcissist screwing up the political system, the nation and the culture any more than he already has. Who isn’t biased this way? A panel of Ann Coulter, Ted Nugent and David Duke would be great theater, but I don’t think it would serve the interests of the American people.

Trump claims he thrives on conflict, but for some reason Kelly terrifies him, and Fox, to its credit, has not merely refused to cater to his phobia, but mocked it. Fox News Channel President Roger Ailes told The Post today that “Megyn Kelly is an excellent journalist, and the entire network stands behind her. She will absolutely be on the debate stage on Thursday night.” Later, the network deliciously called out Trump for the hypocrite and coward that he is, saying,

“We learned from a secret back channel that the Ayatollah and Putin both intend to treat Donald Trump unfairly when they meet with him if he becomes president. A nefarious source tells us that Trump has his own secret plan to replace the Cabinet with his Twitter followers to see if he should even go to those meetings.”

Oh, snap! That’s a bit tough, but this is Trump. He’s supposed to be able to take it. What was his devastating response? Continue reading

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From Duke: Unethical Black College Student Demands Of The Week

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Unethical Quote of the Week: Vice Provost for Student Affairs Inge-Lise Ameer

“The protest was a wonderful, beautiful thing.”

—Dartmouth Vice Provost for Student Affairs Inge-Lise Ameer during a campus student meeting discussion of last week’s  Black Lives Matter protest in the student library. Ameer proclaimed her support for the protesters, their conduct and their demands.

The student protest she was so thrilled with is described here and here. Ethics Alarms also referenced the protest, including these memorable statements that black students screamed in the faces of white students:

“Fuck you, you filthy white fucks!”

“Fuck you and your comfort!” 

“Fuck you, you racist shit!

When a female student began to cry as a result of the confrontation, the protester shouted, “Fuck your white tears!”

This is what a Dartmouth administrator described as “a wonderful, beautiful thing.”

Of course, she should be summarily fired, and the students responsible for the assault ought to be suspended or expelled. They won’t be.

The kind of speech direct at the students by the racist Black Lives Matter members (I know that’s redundant; indulge me) was what the Supreme Court has called “fighting words,” especially when combined with the conduct of getting into a student’s space in a hostile attitude.  It is a miracle there wasn’t a fight; there should have been. Students should not tolerate this kind of unjustified, anti-white conduct while they are studying, or any other time.

Note that the mainstream media doesn’t feel this is worthy of coverage or comment.

Today I will add The College Fix and Campus Reform to the links.

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Sources: The Dartmouth, Tab, The Dartmouth Review.

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Comment of the Day: Amherst Students Have Learned The Progressive-Approved Method to Win Political Debates: Intimidate And Censor The Opposition

Those were the days, my friend...

Those were the days, my friend…

Arthur in Maine delivered a suggested administrative reply to the asinine”demands” of Amherst students, who appeared to be either trying to make state school students, like in Missouri, feel better by proving that attendees of elite private colleges could be idiotic too, or attempting to emulate their imagined betters at Yale  I hope Arthur’s form letter gets a workout, because there will be plenty of audiences for it.

Yesterday, there was an especially ugly demonstration at Dartmouth on November 12, with over 150 Black Lives Matter student members accosting white students and chanting, “Fuck you, you filthy white fucks!” “Fuck you and your comfort!” and “Fuck you, you racist shit!,” among other Elizabethan epithets worthy of the culture and and verbal virtuosity they have been imbued with in Hanover. Black Lives Matter is at the root of this uprising by the black privileged against the white privileged; it has been a racist and hate-based movement from the beginning, and the knee-jerk progressive politicians, journalists, pundits and leaders, including Barack Obama and Bernie Sanders, who have given it their seals of approval either actively or passively should have this and all the  ugliness to come stamped on their resumes. They worked hard to create racial paranoia and divide the nation by color and ethnicity. This was the predictable result: I predicted it; many did. They intentionally planted dynamite in the nation’s most vulnerable fault-line—race— for political gain, and the tremors have started, where they usually do, on the campuses.

Good job, everybody. Good job.

These things do not happen in a vacuum. The macro-cause is always weak leadership, in the home, in the classroom, in the nation. Students may not know much, but they can tell when their country is in distress, and they want to participate in effort to help. Unfortunately, they have one tool at their disposal—disruption—and it usually makes the distress worse.

For I too am from the Sixties. It gave me a twinge of sympathy for Hillary Clinton when she got so much criticism for saying this during the debate on Saturday, for she only meant that she has experience with this phenomenon, and has seen it up close. (Well, she was also trying to duck the question.)

Arthur’s excellent script for administrators is, I fear, too little too late. These culture-wounding attacks on trust and speech  have been nurtured by parents, demagogues, indoctrinating teachers and cynical political leaders; administrators, the least influential and the most lily-livered of all, have scant chance of stemming it.

It would be a start, though.

Here is Arthur in Maine’s Comment of the Day on the Ethics Alarms post, Amherst Students Have Learned The Progressive-Approved Method to Win Political Debates: Intimidate And Censor The Opposition: Continue reading

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Amherst Students Have Learned The Progressive-Approved Method to Win Political Debates: Intimidate And Censor The Opposition

Progressive student propose a new logo for Amherst College.

Progressive student propose a new logo for Amherst College.

Say hello to yesterday’s demands from the new totalitarians in the Amherst student body.

Amherst was once known as an elite place for the expansion of the intellect and critical thinking abilities. The student have just devalued that degree. (My high school friend Peter, who often comments here, lately to assail me for not supporting Donald Trump, is a proud graduate of the institution. He has my deep sympathies.) No critical thinking could produce this. I’ve bolded my favorite parts:

Amherst Uprising – What We Stand For

Submitted by Amherst Uprising – a collective of students on campus who came together as a result of the sit-In organized in Frost Library on 11/12/15.

Preamble: Continue reading

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