Daily Archives: July 28, 2021

Champions

I saw this posted on Facebook by Byron Heath and just had to share it with all y’all.

This realization I had about Simone Biles is gonna make some people mad, but oh well.

Yesterday I was excited to show my daughters Kerri Strug’s famous one-leg vault. It was a defining Olympic moment that I watched live as a kid, and my girls watched raptly as Strug fell, and then limped back to leap again.

But for some reason I wasn’t as inspired watching it this time. In fact, I felt a little sick. Maybe being a father and teacher has made me soft, but all I could see was how Kerri Strug looked at her coach, Bela Karolyi, with pleading, terrified eyes, while he shouted back “You can do it!” over and over again.

My daughters didn’t cheer when Strug landed her second vault. Instead they frowned in concern as she collapsed in agony and frantic tears.

“Why did she jump again if she was hurt?” one of my girls asked. I made some inane reply about the heart of a champion or Olympic spirit, but in the back of my mind a thought was festering:

*She shouldn’t have jumped again*

The more the thought echoed, the stronger my realization became. Coach Karolyi should have gotten his visibly injured athlete medical help immediately! Now that I have two young daughters in gymnastics, I expect their safety to be the coach’s number one priority. Instead, Bela Karolyi told Strug to vault again. And he got what he wanted; a gold medal that was more important to him than his athlete’s health.

I’m sure people will say “Kerri Strug was a competitor–she WANTED to push through the injury.”

That’s probably true. But since the last Olympics we’ve also learned these athletes were put into positions where they could be systematically abused both emotionally and physically, all while being inundated with “win at all costs” messaging. A teenager under those conditions should have been protected, and told “No medal is worth the risk of permanent injury.” In fact, we now know that Strug’s vault wasn’t even necessary to clinch the gold; the U.S. already had an insurmountable lead. Nevertheless, Bela Karolyi told her to vault again according to his own recounting of their conversation:

“I can’t feel my leg,” Strug told Karolyi.

“We got to go one more time,” Karolyi said. “Shake it out.”

“Do I have to do this again?” Strug asked.

“Can you, can you?” Karolyi wanted to know.

“I don’t know yet,” said Strug. “I will do it. I will, I will.”

The injury forced Strug’s retirement at 18 years old. Dominique Moceanu, a generational talent, also retired from injuries shortly after. They were top gymnasts literally pushed to the breaking point, and then put out to pasture. Coach Karolyi and Larry Nassar (the serial sexual abuser) continued their long careers, while the athletes were treated as a disposable resource.

Today Simone Biles–the greatest gymnast of all time–chose to step back from the competition, citing concerns for mental and physical health. I’ve already seen comments and posts about how Biles “failed her country”, “quit on us”, or “can’t be the greatest if she can’t handle the pressure.” Those statements are no different than Coach Karolyi telling an injured teen with wide, frightened eyes: “We got to go one more time. Shake it out.”

The subtext here is: “Our gold medal is more important than your well-being.”

Our athletes shouldn’t have to destroy themselves to meet our standards. If giving empathetic, authentic support to our Olympians means we’ll earn less gold medals, I’m happy to make that trade.

Here’s the message I hope we can send to Simone Biles: You are an outstanding athlete, a true role model, and a powerful woman. Nothing will change that. Please don’t sacrifice your emotional or physical well-being for our entertainment or national pride. We are proud of you for being brave enough to compete, and proud of you for having the wisdom to know when to step back. Your choice makes you an even better example to our daughters than you were before. WE’RE STILL ROOTING FOR YOU!

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Bits & Bytes

BACK THE BLUE: CLICK https://www.theepochtimes.com/mkt_breakingnews/video-bodycam-shows-officer-rescuing-6-year-old-allegedly-kidnapped-by-stranger_3899156.html [:53, 1:36] to see body cam footage and read about the wonderful job witnesses and LEOs did to rescue a 6-year-old girl from her kidnapper. The creep is in custody, charged with kidnapping, with $1 million bail. I need a tissue.

BLEXIT TENNESSEE: CLICK https://www.facebook.com/BlexitAmerica/videos/1730198240521961 [5:06]

BORDER: Border Patrol processing facilities in the region are once again overwhelmed. Last week, Border Patrol in the Rio Grande Valley apprehend more than 20,000 illegal immigrants in one week.

CALIFORNIA: Basilico’s Pasta in Huntington Beach has posted this somewhat tongue-in-cheek sign. (It’s impossible to prove a negative.) The owners are also anti-mask. I’m guessing the clientele will self-sort. LOL

EDUCATION: The University of Kentucky doled out thousands to an assistant professor’s private company to host an “anti-racist” workshop for school administrators in January 2021. The course aims to “replace white supremacy with the more accurate white inferiority complex.”

Racist” is still defined as “A Person who believes a particular race is superior to other.

FAUXTUS: The internet is a’twitter with speculation over what Dementia Joe was actually saying. It sounds a lot like, “My butt’s been wiped,” which makes no sense … even for him.

CLICK https://twitter.com/MollyNagle3/status/1419386522747510785 [:21] to hear the words in context.

Katie Jerkovich at the Daily Caller writes, “I have listened to the longer clip over and over again. To this moment I cannot fathom what POTUS was attempting to say. It is my guess, though, that the president of the United States is not walking up to the press corps and saying his ‘butt’s been wiped.’” Others who listened said, “It sounds like he’s speaking another language or possibly mocking the reporter’s accent”, “It sounds like he’s just making noises”, and “Just sounds like gibberish.”

GEORGE SOROS: FEC records show that the billionaire leftist donated $1 million to Color of Change PAC. The PAC frequently calls for the defunding of police departments.

KINDNESS: “To the man in 2D. Today, you were traveling from Orlando to Philly. I don’t know you, but I imagine you saw us somewhere. I was pushing a stroller, had a diaper bag on my arm, and was also lugging an oxygen machine for my daughter. We had smiles on our faces as we were headed to see her ‘friends’ at CHOP (Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia). We pre- boarded the plane, got cozy in our window seat, and made jokes to those around us about having to sit by my yelling-but-happy baby. The flight attendant came over and told me you were waiting to switch seats. You were giving up your comfortable, first class seat to us.

Not able to hold back tears, I cried my way up the aisle while my daughter, Lucy, laughed! She felt it in her bones too… real, pure, goodness. I smiled and thanked you as we switched, but didn’t get to thank you properly.

Sooo… thank you. Not just for the seat itself but for noticing. For seeing us and realizing maybe things are not always easy. For deciding you wanted to show a random act of kindness to US. It reminded me how much good there is in this world. I can’t wait to tell Lucy someday. In the meantime… we will pay it forward. AA 588 passenger in seat 2D, we truly feel inspired by your generosity.”

LIFE: We now have our own flag.

MISSOURI: CLICK https://rumble.com/vkcb4x-missouri-ag-to-sue-st.-louis-over-mask-madness.html [1:12] to hear the state AG explain why he’s suing St. Louis for imposing a new mask mandate.

PROJECT VERITAS: CLICK (if you’re feeling masochistic) https://rumble.com/vkealr-project-veritas-leaks-unreleased-cnn-aoc-puff-piece.html [9:59] to see James O’Keefe’s report about a newly leaked CNN interview with AOC. Most of it is the fawning interview. I watched it so you wouldn’t have to. Now I need a shower.

RELIGIOUS FREEDOM: Alliance Defending Freedom is helping a Mississippi mom sue the Simpson County School District for violating her daughter’s First Amendment rights. The girl’s teacher told her she couldn’t wear her “Jesus Loves Me” face mask at school. The school handbook only bars messages glorifying drug culture or containing profanity.

When the mom pushed the school, the district sent her a copy of the district COVID-19 policy which had been modified less than an hour before it was emailed to her to include language barring students from wearing masks expressing religious views.

STARBUCKS: Is this one of the reasons the coffee is so expensive? – “Starbucks health insurance plans include not only gender reassignment surgery (which had been covered since 2012), but now also a host of procedures for transgender partners in the U.S. that were previously considered cosmetic, and therefore not covered, such as breast reduction or augmentation surgery, facial feminization, hair transplants and more.”

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