Letters to the Editor: October 19 – 25, 2017
Warlike Culture Explains Football’s Popularity
The popularity of “the collective carnage we call football” [Stupid, Angry, White Men, Editorial, October 5-11, 2017] isn’t surprising, since it’s a reflection of the fact that we’re a country at war; now longer than at any other time in our history.
While working with others as part of a united effort to achieve a common goal is typically American, the game of football mimics war. One side tries to vanquish the other in a fight over territory, while battling “in the trenches,” throwing long “bombs”, and running sweeps behind protective screens. Quarterbacks are “field generals” who bark out orders to players drilled to perform as a unit. Each team tries to dominate the opposition by scouting out and exploiting his weaknesses. Individual players are paid to sacrifice themselves for the good of the team, all while risking extreme physical injury and/or mental impairment at any time. Is it merely a coincidence that the warlike game of football so dominates our culture? I don’t think so. And, like Nicholas Benton, I also worry about the “national loss of our soul.”
Why Pay Double What Alexandria Paid for New School?
Regarding the George Mason High School bond referendum, let’s consider a similar case. Alexandria built T.C. Williams High School 10 years ago for $90 million. Adjusting for inflation, that would be $120-125 million now. But T.C. Williams is more than twice the size of the planned Mason school and serves more than twice the number of students. Why are we spending more than double the cost per student than Alexandria did? Either our “wish” list is three times longer or the cost estimate is padded like a sumo wrestler.
Do we want to be the “Little City” with blank checks and no balances?
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