NFL: End-game or End of the Game?

The capitulation of the NFL is now complete. Except for a few surly players who continue to make fools of themselves, the majority of the players and owners have now given up on their foolish tantrum. The cooler heads (obviously not Roger Goodell) are now surveying the wreckage wondering if anything is salvageable at this point.

I can’t tell you how pleased I am. Looking at this from the normal rhapsody of grievance that has plagued our country for several decades, I’m gratified on so many levels that I have to continually pinch myself that this wasn’t just a pleasant dream. For one thing, I’m pleased beyond measure that President Trump has refused to play the assigned role of automatic obeisance and humiliation that the ritual of Eternal White GuiltTM constantly demands.

The role that Trump is playing is that of Disruptor. The left doesn’t get it: we have a right-winger in the White House who doesn’t play by the rules; rules which were set up decades ago to make it easy to excuse anti-Americanism and all sorts of pathology. The Corporate Media Complex threw down the White Guilt card and he picked it up, tore it up and spat on it. These pampered playboys didn’t know what hit them.

In poker, it’s called “bluffing”. Only Trump wasn’t bluffing. He had an ace-in-the-hole. It’s called the American flag.

This is one reason I voted for him for president. After decades of wheeling and dealing in real estate, he knows when to make a deal and when to walk away. And he knows when he’s dealing with pretty boys who’ve had it too easy for too long.

Of course it’s too late for the NFL. The ugly image of anti-American multi-millionaire athletes who despise this country won’t be wiped away anytime soon. In fact, it’s impossible. The economy is on the uptick but money is still too hard to come by for most people and the sheer ingratitude on display is unforgivable for most working class people.

It’s over.

I guess they did us a favor. For too long we’ve bought into a national narrative of eternal guilt for [fill in the blank] and as such we were never allowed to be allowed to simply enjoy our lives as best we could. I imagine the average fan would continue to eat his bread whilst at the circus in order to palliate the normal pains of his existence but there’s always a breaking point. All things come to an end in due time. This time however, the end was expedited because of the stupidity of those whining ingrates.

And yes, let’s put our cards on the table. We are talking about mostly black athletes. As for the white owners, that’s a story for another day but they will have to eat ashes as well. Regardless, they weren’t the public face of this debacle.

So why did they do it? A few answers (in no particular order):

1. They’re ungrateful.

2. They believe the anti-American nonsense peddled to them by Hollywood and Academe.

3. They’re not too bright.

Unlike the professional athletes of old who went to college when a college education actually meant something, your typical Enormous State University has dumbed-down it’s education to moronic levels. (This is across the board by the way: just try engaging your average over-educated barista in any argument that requires critical thinking.) Why was this done? Because in dealing with most “scholar-athletes” today, we have to take into account the decades of dysgenic social engineering wrought by Welfare.

Say what you will about athletes of the yore, but men like Jackie Robinson, Cassius Clay, Jim Brown, Bill Russell, etc, were highly intelligent, well-spoken men who made their own way in life. They came from intact families and actually worked at real jobs along the way. Whatever doors were opened for them were the result of them knocking on them. No red carpets were unrolled in order to protect their precious little toes. There were no sycophants kissing their butts telling them how The Man owed them something simply because they were “oppressed”.

These were men, back when it meant something to be a man.

It is known by many that Trump, a billionaire, actually has the common touch. When the cameras aren’t rolling, he’s been known to go speak to the busboy, the waiter and the janitor. His own lineage is very common: working-class German immigrants on his father’s side and poor, Highland Scots ancestry on his mother’s. Though in private he is known to act as if to the manor born, the rough Queensborough veneer always comes through.

In other words, he knows on an instinctive level what animates most Americans. And it ain’t pissing on the rituals of our civic religion.

This should have been obvious to those who deign to rule us. The Ruling Class. The Deep State. The Oligarchy. After all, they stacked the deck against him in the election. And he still won. Bigly.

Of course some will say that Trump wasted precious political capital on something “symbolic”. That he should have enacted tax cuts by now or started building The Wall. These are not invalid arguments but they are beside the point. In defending mythic institutions that are part of our civic religion, Trump is fighting a battle that will pay dividends far into the future.

It was Evelyn Waugh who said that he wasn’t going to vote Conservative anymore because once they had won, they hadn’t “turned the clock back one minute”. In banning hermaphrodites from the military, in embracing an America First foreign policy and now, in wiping up the floor with these anti-American ingrates, we can actually say that Trump has turned back the clock in several significant areas.

And for that, I’m grateful.

Comments

  1. Michael Bauman says:

    George, I did not realize Oklahoma had legalized marijuana. Such lehslization is the only explanation for your optimism as it is wildly out of sync with reality and your presentation off kilter in specific ways:

    I do not believe Trump can accurately be described as a right winger. He is a populist but even there not ideological. Populists govern with the leadership principal of trying to determine where the populace is headed then getting in front of them.

    You should not expect consistency from populists.
    Such lack of consistency in a political environment ruled by hard core ideologs seems fresh, challenging and creative but is quite difficult to translate into actual government as we see.

    Second, these athletes are not necessarily dumb. They are uneducated and ignorant but do not always lack intelligence. Their situation is much like house slaves if it we’re actually put into prespective. The NFL and the sports marketing conglomerates are the slave masters.

    The slavemasters will in all likelyhood recover once the protests stop. Even if the players actually went on strike as they probably should the lack of guaranteed contracts for most of them and the lack of a large war chest make the leverage of a strike significantly less. The owners would likely just lock them out and end up making even more money. Then reform all the contracts and start over.

    On the wider scale, the policies Trump is changing suffer the same defect as Obama’s — executive orders are not permanent policy and easily over turned. Trump has no legislation nor is he likely to get any. Obama got the ACA.

    History will likely display Trump as emblematic of the madness of trying to resist the oligarchy when he could easily have been one of them. Plus, do we really know he is not?

    So, calm down, take a breath and look again.

    • George Michalopulos says:

      I like your sense of humor! Yes, you are correct, Trump is no “right-winger”. But he is certainly governing as one.

      The point (at this point in the game anyway) is that these cultural issues are as important –nay, more important–than an actual decrease in the tax rate or the disemboweling of that regulation. Although these two are important and in many of these areas Trump is acting very much the Friedmanite right-winger.

      If it’s all for show, then I’ll take it. Because let’s be honest: if Mdme Clinton had won you and I would be wearing pajamas right now working in some rice paddy from dawn til dusk while being lectured about the evils of the Patriarchy.

    • George Michalopulos says:

      Michael, as to your observations regarding populists not being consistent, I agree. Trump is first and foremost a populist, not a conservative. Right now however he’s doing and enacting conservative actions and again (you are correct) because he’s doing it by executive order these can always snap back with a liberal successor.

      Having said that, I believe that the vast majority of his executive actions have been so popular, or at least so economically effective, that they won’t be undone by any successor, even a liberal one. Perhaps one or two here or there will be tweaked to appease some liberal grievance group but overall, I’d say that 95% of his executive orders will withstand the test of time.

      Admittedly, this is not ideal. I would prefer legislation both in principle and in practice. However it’s possible that the Federal government is too unwieldy and our nation too diverse and large for Congressional governance. Right now, I foresee the Congress as being able to provide only oversight of the Executive.

      Again: not good. However given the diversity of our nation such legislative impotence may be a symptom of such diversity. It’s possible that the American Republic may be fracturing into several different nations based on geographical/demographic conditions.

      • Michael Bauman says:

        George, the US is ungovernable because we no longer have a national consensus as to what constitutes good order, morally and economically. While splitting up the country has attractions that will not do it either even with a population exchange.

        The disagreements here are indicative of that. It is the nature of modernity to create and exacerbate our differences. It is a spiritual disease that reacts in “righteous” anger when someone disagrees with us. Then we can “righteously” purge the temple as something Jesus would do or whomever we justify our sins by.

        The is no fix in the realm of political economy even monarchy. That has become the path of the will to power. It is demonically inspired.

        The rejection of that will has to come first. The rejection of the atomizing effect of the seduction of nothingness.

        Contra Nietzche we must embrace the Divine Thou Shalts of virtue and love in obedience. That is the source of proper order.

        Repent, forgive and seek not for ourselves. I cannot go even five minutes in that direction but there and only there is hope.

        • George Michalopulos says:

          No disagreement here Michael. You’ve beautifully summarized the ennui that animates our nation: the loss of moral consensus.

          • Michael Bauman says:

            George, moral consensus certainly, but all morality is predicated on consmological assumptions. If one’s cosmology, even if unconscious, is predicated on randomness or deism (an absent God) then one has a morality that is fluid at best.

            Along with that the impositionof a radical individualism and the political order will also suffer.

            It is at a certain time point-on the verge of nihilistic chaos triumphing or so it seems that Trump is the perfect candidate.

            It is more than just the moral consensus it is a radical turn in what it means to be human.

    • Christopher says:

      “I do not believe Trump can accurately be described as a right winger. He is a populist but even there not ideological. Populists govern with the leadership principal of trying to determine where the populace is headed then getting in front of them.”

      This is how he is usually thought of, but Trump keeps doing the “conservative” thing and I am beginning to wonder if the “populist” label slides off him as easily as every other typical political category.

      His response to the whole Confederate memorial issue has me thinking that as far as a political actor, he has real “conservative” instincts and is willing to stand up for them in the face of a populist who is moving away from anything “conservative” at all. Most will point out this or that in his life as being the very anti-thesis of conservative and yes all that is true but in his role as “president” I am seeing some things that are neither populist or liberal…

      • George Michalopulos says:

        Indeed, within the last 48 hours Trump did three very conservative things in the socio-cultural sphere:

        1. He allowed companies with religious objections to opt out of the Obamacare mandates regarding mandatory birth control/abortion coverage;

        2. In addition, he allowed companies to legally discriminate against LGBT persons if their employment is antithetical to their mission;

        3. He proclaimed Monday to be Columbus Day and praised the permanent settlement of the Americas by Europeans.

        Each one of these things is huge from a culturally conservative standpoint. My question to all the Nevertrumpers and Cuckservatives who predicted that Trump would not govern by ideological principles: how would you like your crow? Medium or well-done?

  2. Oh, boy! Muhammad Ali intelligent? He had an iq of 75-” borderline intellectual functioning.” That’s just a tad over being mildly retarded or what people call a moron. He had an entertaining personality- nothing more. Good one, George! By the way, with all due respect to your fulsome praise of Donald Trump’s mythical deal making ability, does it ever bother you that he was a draft dodger par excellence?

    George, please forgive me, but isn’t the Las Vegas massacre al little more important than the shenanigan’s of the NFL right now?

    • George Michalopulos says:

      Ali’s IQ was 75 according to one study but in observing his interactions with the media, other people, he was clearly intelligent and well-spoken (albeit always controversial). I worry about these IQ studies because some people test either inconsistently or there are other intangible aspects at play that we are not at present aware of.

      For example, the Aborigines of Australia come in at the lowest IQ per race/ethnicity (clocking in at 70+) yet they have maintained a hunter-gatherer culture for thousands of years. How is this possible? A European with an IQ of 75 is considered an imbecile (i.e. mentally retarded) and cannot function. Is it possible that there are other factors besides IQ that are factors? What is “native intelligence” for that matter? Etc.

      The Las Vegas massacre is hugely important. I want to withhold commentary on it as I believe that there is much going on under the surface that we don’t see.

      • Michael Bauman says:

        George, my psych professor in college used to snort whenever IQ tests were mention and say “The only thing I tests measure is your ability to take IQ tests.”

        The idea that intelligence can be actually measured by a test of a subset of reading skills is absurd.

      • Anonymous says:

        If you want to know the motive for Las Vegas, look no further than the 12. The motive is vividly clear and heinous, but the government will declare we don’t know to cover their own malfeasance.

    • Ronda Wintheiser says:

      Pardon my lack of an IQ, Cyprian, but I don’t get the alleged immorality of “dodging the draft.”

      What was so terrible about that, especially considering the war we were waging at that time?

      • Well, Ronda, I believe there is nothing wrong with being a conscientious objector, but getting a doctor’s note like the overprivileged Donald Trump, who by his own admission was in no hurry to go to Vietnam, means some poor pleb had to go in his place. I believe that every President should be required to serve four years in the US Marine Corps.

        • Ronda Wintheiser says:

          Ah. The spectre of “overprivilege” rears its ugly head.

          So then not only is Trump guilty of not being in a hurry to go to Viet Nam, but also of having been born into an immigrant family that accomplished what every immigrant comes to America for — the American dream.

          Shame on him.

          (You’ve been drinking the Kool Aid.)

          As for your “belief that every President should be required to serve four years in the US Marine Corps”, I seriously doubt that was something you asserted when Obama was president. (Can you imagine him in the Marines?)

          As for the “time honored American tradition of the rich and the socially well placed avoiding military service in time of war”, I cannot bring myself to judge anyone who does whatever is necessary to avoid service in any war that is not a just, Consitutionally declared war.

          Look, I’m no Trump supporter. I didn’t vote for him. I was somewhat aghast that George did (although I have to grudgingly admit that his analyses of Trump’s election and presidency are compelling). But I don’t recall any president being subjected to so much sanctimonious ad hominem.

          There is new research out from Pew that confirms my impression:

          “An analysis of 3,000 stories during the first 100 days of his presidency across 24 different media organizations found that reporting on Trump has been the most negative compared to other presidents over the past 25 years.

          “The research shows that only 5 percent of media reporting during the period was positive. Sixty-two percent of the stories were negative, and 33 percent were neither positive nor negative.

          “By comparison, coverage of President Barack Obama during the same time period was 42 percent positive, and 20 percent negative. For President George W. Bush the number was 22 percent positive, and 28 percent negative. And for President Bill Clinton it was 27 percent positive, and 28 percent negative.

          “The study also revealed that most media coverage of Trump focused on his character traits rather than policy.

          “Only 31 percent of all stories published on Trump focused on policy issues, compared to 50 percent for Obama, 65 percent for Bush, and 58 percent for Clinton.”

          https://www.theepochtimes.com/media-give-trump-most-negative-presidential-coverage-in-25-years_2327946.html

          • I voted for Donald Trump, and couldn’t stand the Obamas.

            • Peter Ray Millman says:

              There’s a lot of propaganda by the mainstream media against the police; don’t buy into it. They are endangering the lives of hard working police officers who are trying to make a positive impact in their communities. Go to youtube and see some of the wonderful acts of kindness by police officers toward African Americans that the lamestream media never reports. Why don’t they report this? It’s not sensationalistic enough.

              I don’t have a racist bone in my body, but I’m not going to stand by and watch law enforcement lives put at risk by false charges of racism against African Americans.

              Now, this is simple common sense; it’s amazing what a little common sense will do. If you are stopped by the police, keep your hands on the steering wheel. Present your id and registration when asked. Be polite. These simple steps will de-escalate all encounters between the police and citizens. Now, let’s stop this nonsense about the police targeting African Americans or anyone else for special opprobrium and violence. It is simply not happening, and to suggest that someone telling the truth is irresponsible, stupid and absurd. Got it? The overwhelming majority of the police in America are not racist thugs and bullies hiding behind their badges. To suggest otherwise is to endanger the lives of these fine, innocent officers.

              The statistics and studies are overwhelming. I repeat: the police are not targeting African Americans. Let’s stop playing this game of semantics. The irrational, incredulous, false conclusions by those who hate the police have deadly consequences for law enforcement

              By the way, please check out Officer Tommy Norman on youtube. It should warm even the coldest heart.

              • George Michalopulos says:

                Peter, I’m with you on this. The neo-Marxist propaganda that is being spewed out by Sorosite organizations like BLM and exaggerated by the Corporate Media is unforgivable. I’ve known more than a few cops and they go about their business every day knowing full well that that that day may be their last. They don’t deserve the obloquy that the cult of St Michael Brown regularly heaps upon them.

                Basically, the BLMers have a choice to make: cut out their racist bullshit or watch the Ferguson Effect continue to take hold in predominantly black areas. It’s or the other.

          • Michael Bauman says:

            Trump is not guilty of anything. What is “overprivledged” by the way. I never have understood that term. I also never said Trump was guilty of anything. IMO he has no more guilt than any of us and a good deal less than most politicians. My comment had nothing to do with Trump actually.

            You read too much into what I said. I was simply saying that there does tend to be a two tired morality and that is a political reality of long standing. Rich people usually are able to avoid military service if they want to. Non-rich people generally cannot. That should be considered.

            Many people don’t like that. Apparently Cyprian does not. It complicates the discussion.

            Frankly, I don’t really care. If a country decides to go to war, the soldiers who fight the war ought to be positively motivated to do so. It is their lives after all.

            Cyprian apparently has a King and Country type of patriotism. Still patriotism also needs to be considered as there are times when that should override personal preference.

            Neither personal judgment nor impersonal patriotism is sufficient however.

            No war the US has fought since WWII has been constitutional. That is where the discussion should start. Proper authority is a key to the rest.

            • George Michalopulos says:

              I don’t disagree with Cyprian re the idea of “throne and altar” type of Christianity. It worked for the better part of two millennia.

      • Michael Bauman says:

        Well, Ronda it does speak to the time honored American tradition of the rich and the socially well placed avoiding military service in time of war. Which also reflects on a two tiered morality on a larger scale.

        While I sympathize with your sentiments I am not sure it is as simple as either you or Cyprian make it.

        • Michael, I don’t have a patriotic bone in my body. Would I shed my blood for this country? Never! Do I love America? Absolutely not!

          Okay, Michael, this is what I think should be done. The First Amendment to the Constitution should be changed; the practice of Islam should be illegal. Too many Muslims kill Christians. Also, no Muslim immigration to America.

          Secondly, I would abolish the Second Amendment. I believe every firearm in America should be confiscated, then we disarm all the police departments in the country. If the citizenry did’t have guns, then there would be no need for the police to possessed these weapons. Also, we should immediately destroy our stockpile of nuclear weapons.

          • Michael Bauman says:

            Sorry I misread you Cyprian.

          • James Monroe Harris says:

            If you don’t love it, leave it, let this song that I’m singing be a warning. When you’re running down my country, Hoss. you’re walking on the fighting side of me.

            • Tim R. Mortiss says:

              Cyprian may be overstating it for ironic purposes, or maybe not. But the gratuitous world-weary anti-Americanism so often found here does gripe me from time to time, as well.

              The monarchism we get here, from my doubtless narrow point of view, seems merely ridiculous.

              • George Michalopulos says:

                TimR, I hope you’re misreading the situation. I for one am far from “anti-American”. I am however quite exercised by what poses for “Americanism” these days. Likewise, I am not “anti-Orthodox” simply because I decry the foibles of our bishops or well-heeled laity, etc. Nor am I “anti-Semitic” because I criticize certain policies of the Israeli government or the Neocon establishment. Etc.

                Regardless, there is nothing wrong with critiquing any institution if it is justified. I of course cannot speak for every commentator who posts something on this blog. Under the First Amendment they are free to comment at will.

                • George would it be wrong for me, to critique you, in that nearly 600 people were shot, and 58 of them killed over a week ago, and until you can figure out some type of conspiracy, in the whole event, all we get is more gay, corrupt GOA, and NFL news?

                  Am I the only the one here that perceives we have become so jaded, cold spirited, and numb to these types of mass murders, that we only become pissed off when this type of mass murder is committed by a Islamist Terrorist, or some political group that offends us? Yet, all we hear is crickets, when one resembles us? Do we fear, or not want to admit, that we may have become that which we say we hate. What does this say about our state of mind, especially as Orthodox Christians. Where is this nation/world headed, and in quick order, if such an atrocity is yesterdays news in a week or two. This is an Orthodox Christian based website, yet not one word as to a prayers out to the victims, no matter how sadly blasé, common, and cliche it is nowadays! I remained silent for a week, so please forgive my insistence on your blog, George, it’s time to at least pray: Lord have Mercy on the victims of the Las Vegas Massacre, their families, and all of us!

                  Last I checked, It is still important to pray for one another, regardless if one is a Orthodox Christian or not! Especially when this Massacre is more than just another Massacre. It is another reflection upon us, as a society!

                  • George Michalopulos says:

                    Dino, you would not be wrong to critique me. I’m still trying to wrap my head around Las Vegas. My initial impulse was Islamic terrorism (of course). Then a crazed liberal who hates Red-staters. Now I’m thinking it’s the Deep State fighting back.

                    • Estonian Slovak says:

                      It’s amazing when people tweet out that most of the people at a Country concert were Republicans and therefore deserved to die…what if a Kluxer had fired on a black church with people inside, and some person tweeted out similar garbage.
                      On that note, how many people have seen the video of the African American ex-Baptist Preacher who became Orthodox? One thing that struck me was when he spoke about black churches being attacked while people in them were at prayer. He said something to the effect that ” Greeks, Russians, and Serbs know what it’s like to pray while enduring persecution.”
                      Call me a conspiracy theorist, but I think it impossible for the Las Vegas killer to have smuggled that many arms into his hotel room . Too many things don’t add up.

                  • George Michalopulos says:

                    Dino, you would be absolutely correct to critique me because of my silence re Vegas. I plan on writing about this as more information comes in. Please forgive me.

                    • Always George. Just pissed off that now my family and I must have a exit strategy whenever in public.

                • Tim R. Mortiss says:

                  George, my modest complaint is the more general one toward those who hold that the US and its Constitution were wicked from the get go, that even though the Constitution is bad, George Washington was the only good president because he upheld it, that we’ve lived in a totalitarian state since Abraham Lincoln, that a Republic is the work of the devil and monarchy that of God, and on and on in that vein. Think you probably know what I mean.

                  All of which is fine in its own place, so to speak, but which is disconcerting to so frequently find on a site at least nominally about Orthodox Christianity.

                  As they say, just my two bits worth.

                  • George Michalopulos says:

                    TimR, agreed. I for one think the Founding Fathers were pretty fine chaps (brilliant actually). Having said that, I must agree with John Adams that our republican system of governance is only suited for a “religious and moral people”. I’m not sure that the Constitution can withstand the present moral anarchy.

                    Homosexuality for example will be used to to close down churches for example and of course destroy what remains of the nuclear family (which, let us not forget, is the building block of all civilizations).

                  • Tim,

                    As far as monarchy is concerned, I agree with Vladimir Moss’s excellent analysis which you can find here:

                    http://www.orthodoxchristianbooks.com/articles/273/must-an-orthodox-christian-be-a-monarchist/

                    His conclusion is that Orthodoxy has and can tolerate or be compatible with a variety of types of government but that the Church Fathers positively rejected democracy as evil in se and exhorted monarchy as the preferred form of government.

                    His scholarship on the matter is impressive and I can’t really argue with it. However, I would also add that America was not founded to be a democracy per se but a republic that had controlled mechanisms for cautiously channeling the views of the mob through a process designed to let the consensus opinions of an educated, landed aristocracy prevail. That was the system provided to us in the Constitution as it was originally adopted, with the Bill of Rights.

                    That system left much of the power in the hands of the states. However, the power to make war was given to the executive, whereas the power to declare war officially was given to the legislative branch, which holds the power of the purse.

                    One can look at this system as a limited form of monarchy and Washington early on was repeatedly addressed as “Your Excellency” before standard protocol was established.

                    I would prefer a monarchy and share the view that representative democracy, the ideology to which our system currently leans far too much, is evil because it is nothing more or less than government by the greatest common denominator of the passions of the mob.

                    What we need is a much stronger executive in this country, perhaps one which could be developed within the current constitutional framework. The problem we have in America is partisan schizophrenia. Thus the two-party system simply must go. As we speak, hopefully, it is being replaced by a dominant party system where one party (presumably the Republican party, aptly named) would concentrate the lion’s share of the power and all other parties (Democrats, Reform, Greens, Socialists, World Workers/Answer) would operate as we think of “third parties” today; i.e., as a check on corruption.

                    The American government was originally designed to avoid partisanship and the two party system into which it quickly devolved. We can conclude this from the fact that the runner up in the electoral college vote tally was to serve as vice president.

                    • Tim R. Mortiss says:

                      Much I agree with.

                      Said Ronald Syme:
                      “In all ages, whatever the form and name of government, be it monarchy, republic, or democracy, an oligarchy lurks behind the façade ….”

                  • V. Rev. Andrei Alexiev says:

                    I’ve already mentioned how Tsar Alexander II stopped England from aiding the South during the Civil War. Doesn’t he get any credit for that? He also abolished serfdom in Russia at about the same time that Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation. The Tsar freed serfs who were his own Russian people. Lincoln’s proclamation only covered slaves in the Confederacy. Not one single slave in Maryland, Delaware, Kentucky, or Missouri was freed by that act.

                    • George Michalopulos says:

                      Indeed, the Emancipation Proclamation was a wartime contingency, brilliant in its intent in dividing the Northern slave states (i.e. Missouri, Kentucky, Delaware and Maryland) from the South. It also sent a chill into the civilian population in the South, causing them to worry about slave rebellions.

              • James Monroe Harris says:

                Laddie, I believe ye maun still be a Prod by the way ye shoot off yer gob. As anither ex- Prod ah maun beseech ye, hold yer whist until ye really noe the truith, ok?
                In plain English, a little truth goes a long way.

                • Tim R. Mortiss says:

                  Jimmie, me lad, who you be replyin’ to? Cain’t hardly figger it out on this blog anymores.

                  No rest for the Prod hunters, that be sartain…..

            • Friend,
              Don’t you believe in free speech?(Rolls eyes) Blah, blah, blah!

            • Friend,

              You take patriotism, jingoism, chauvinism, violence and murder: I’ll take Christ.

              • Estonian Slovak says:

                Oh, please. You’ve said hateful things about Fr. Seraphim Rose and praised the Papacy. I guess you didn’t hear of the Spanish Inquisition, did you? What about the killing of one million Orthodox Serbs with the knowledge of Papist clergy and in some cases, their participation? Didn’t you just call for the outlawing of Islam here in the states? How will you accomplish this? By non-violent means? Heed Bishop Tikhon’s advice and get a life in Christ.

      • Monk James says:

        JFK re: Conscientious Objectors
        ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
        ‘War will exist until that distant day when the conscientious objector enjoys the same reputation and prestige that the warrior does today.’ –Letter to a Navy friend, quoted in Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr., A Thousand Days: John F. Kennedy in the White House (Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1965), p. 88.

        • True absolute pacifism is a noxious ideology when commended as the unilateral remedy of a nation-state. One cannot make believe that The Fall never occurred. As a result, man is left in a world of limited resources, tormented by the passions, ending in physical death.

          No one here gets out alive (until the Second Coming, of course). Yet our souls are immortal. War is not the worst end imaginable.

          Christ taught us not to resist evil in the civil context; i.e., in a society at relative peace. Yet even this teaching was mitigated when He exhorted the Apostles to arm themselves before sending them out to the Gentiles after the Mystical Supper (see Luke 22:35-38).

          However, non-violence is no substitute for national defense at the level of warfare. The Church has never even adopted a just war theory limiting the causes for war and the tactics permissible as did the Western heretics. The Old Testament is replete with examples of righteous warfare of the most intense varieties ordered in holiness by God Himself.

          • Friend,
            You make many dogmatic statements insinuating that your viewpoint is the only correct one. If one doesn’t believe everything you do, one is a heretic.

            Friend, please allow me to ascertain your opinion on the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, along the with the firestorm created by the US and Great Britain in Dresden, Germany. Your unequivocal answer will reveal to me a great deal about your perspective. Please yes or no answer. Do you or do you not condone these actions? Your honest, straight forward answer will tell me everything I need to know.

            • George Michalopulos says:

              Cyprian, speaking for myself, oncondemn the allied firebombing of Dresden and The atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

            • Cyprian,

              Let me be perfectly clear so that there is no doubt in your mind as to what I believe. I believe that the Church has never made any dogmatic or doctrinal statements limiting warfare in the ways Augustine would have it. That being the case, the full range of strategic and tactical methods used by the Israelites in the God-commanded wars of the Old Testament period are permissible for Christians.

              I have reservations, nonetheless, as to whether the bombing of Dresden was necessary. I would have to look at it more closely. The Nazis were killing large numbers of British civilians with V2’s during this period and some harsh deterrence may have been necessary. Nazi ideology and monstrous activity rendered them beyond the pale, in any case. I have no moral qualms with the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The Japanese were pagans with a noxious anti-Christian ideology. If you read about what they did in Manchuria and to US prisoners of war, you would know that. They would rape American nurse POW’s and tie their legs together before birth contractions came over them in order to torture them and their unborn child to death. I.e., they were Amalek. Anything done to defeat them would have been fine with God including complete extermination. Thankfully, that was not necessary.

              If you ask me “Who would Jesus bomb?”, my reply is to forthrightly remind you that Jesus Christ is the Son, the Word, the Eternal Second Person of the Trinity and thus He too as part of the Godhead that gave the order to the Israelites for the genocidal extermination of certain tribes who taxed His patience to the breaking point by mercilessly hounding His people.

              They all deserved exactly what they got, as did this little gem of a traitor:

              http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-41593659

              Ding, dong, the witch is dead . . .

              “Killing in war is not reckoned by our Fathers as murder; I presume from their wish to make concession to men fighting on behalf of chastity and true religion.” – St. Basil, Letter LXXXVIII, XIII

              • AHH Misha, I know somewhere deep down inside you mean well, and the love of Christ is within you. Trouble is 80 percent of your Church Militant, manifest thoughts and theories if true, would make me run from Orthodox Christianity. Revenge my brother is not a Christian value. God declaring war,and destruction on certain tribes, is not the same as man declaring war, and destruction on certain nations and it’s people. Why we wage war since WW2, always seems suspect, and corrupt in it’s reasoning. WW2 was pretty cut and dry, mistakes made for sure, but as a whole the only war that seemed “Just” for lack of a better word. We live in strange times indeed, and honestly I find myself confused more times than not, in World affairs. I can only pray that I will be the the right side of The Lord, if I’m around, when the end is near! I’m afraid there be many dusty radioactive sandlots in the world, if Misha would be Tsar.

                “Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath;for it is written,”Vengeance is Mine, I will repay”, says The Lord.”-Romans 12:19-20

                • People routinely misunderstand that phrase, “Vengeance is mine, saith the LORD.” [Paul is quoting Deuteronomy 32:35]. Israel was a theocracy. The verse was a caution against personal vengeance similar to our modern sensibilities regarding the impermissible nature of private retaliation rather than government punishment of crime. There is no effective international sovereign to accomplish this task for modern nation states.

                  • So long as we understand that carpet bombing Japan, without mercy, to end the war as quickly as possible,was the plan, and not to avenge mistreated allied POW’s, by killing and maiming innocent Japanese civilians, albeit, a ignorant and brainwashed people to their emperor, they really knew no better. Agreed. In so far as war crimes, that’s what War trials are for, in a least a attempt to be civilized, no matter how barbaric our enemies.

          • In the poster’s tendentious diatribe, he conveniently ignores the fact that no Christian participated in warfare until the advent of Constantinian Christianity. The poster also engages in cherry picking Scriptures to support his novel ideas, totally unsupported by over three hundred years of early Christianity.

            In the eloquent words of Greek Melkite priest Father Emmanuel Charles McCarthy,” every church a Peace Church.”

            • Estonian Slovak says:

              Then, please, join his church. Or a monastery. Or the Amish or some other non-violent group. What should we have done, let Hitler have his way in which case you would be dead or in a slave labor camp?
              Nobody who has been through war glorifies it. I had a Finnish teacher who was caught over in Finland during WW II, though he was born here. He echoed the above sentiments. He interrogated Russian prisoners, yet the war didn’t leave him bitter against all Russians. He came back here and died a devout Lutheran, active in his church and community.
              Then there was a Serb I knew. He was captured by the Nazis. They shot all the prisoners, but he survived, being buried under all of them. He crawled out from under the corpses and machine gunned the Nazis. Should he have meekly gone along with their evil? In thankfulness for his survival, he came over here, raised six children, and was active in his church until death. Before he died, he told his daughter,” In wartime, nobody’s hands are clean.”l

              • Estonian Slovak,
                Up until now, I have shown Christlike patience with you. You don’t know me, and, believe me. you don’t want to know me so I would strongly suggest that you lock it up. Tread very, very carefully.

                • Wow, in one thread Cyprian basically denies the Orthodox Church, and in another he compares himself to Christ, quickly followed up by veiled threats. This is popcorn material.

            • Cyprian,

              I do not wish to argue about war in general, but have you considered the fact that the Roman Centurion Cornelius wasn’t instructed to change his vocation? Nor, for that matter, was the Centurion whose servant Christ healed. And what instruction on repentance did John the Forerunner give to soldiers (who in those days served both as enforcers of Roman law and as warriors for the state)? Curiously lacking is any instruction to cease from performing their appointed duties as soldiers.

              Likewise the soldiers asked him, saying, “And what shall we do?”
              So he said to them, “Do not intimidate anyone or accuse falsely, and be content with your wages.”

            • Michael Bauman says:

              Cyprian, the list of Saints who participated in warfare prior to Constatine is long and distinguished but I will name just two–St. George and St. Demetrios of Thesolonika.

              St. George was martyred because he refused to sacrifice to Caesar at a ceremony honoring his own military leadership. There are also multiple accounts of St. George appearing to Allied soldiers the night prior to the WWII battle of El Alamein encouraging them in the battle to come.

              St. Demetrios, after his repose, led a battalion of heavenly warriors against the Persians laying seige to Thesolonika. The Persians ran from the battle in fear. At least one of his traditional icons shows him spearing a Persian soldier. The armor is historically accurate so it is tough to spiritualize the depiction. He also blessed his friend St. Nestor to kill the Emperor’s gladiator in battle.

              The Orthodox Church is not the home of Dogmatic pacifism. Neither is she the home of Holy War, Misha’s contentions to the contrary. She is the home of those who will do battle however.

          • “Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves. Therefore be wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.”Matthew 10:16

            Not entirely about war versus pacifism, but then it asks the big questions, and then we come to our next topic, persecution, then, now, how, and if we are in the right.

            “But beware of men, for they will deliver you to councils, and scourge you in their synagogues. You will be brought up before governors and kings for My sake, as a testimony to them, and to the Gentiles. But when they deliver you up, do not worry about how, or what you should speak. For it will be given to you in that hour what you should speak;for it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father who speaks in you.”Matthew 17-20

            Whom do we follow? What is Truth? Is God with us, or are we against God? We seek Justice, but our Lord was treated, and tortured as the worst of criminals, and crucified as a false King. It is near impossible to please both man and God, yet that is exactly what we try to achieve. When Christians wage war especially against other Christians, who is right or wrong? Is the Christian foot soldier fighting for Germany, and Hitler better off a pacifist, or a fighting patriot? What if war breaks out with Russia and us, here in America? Would we take up arms against our Orthodox brothers? Should our Government round up all Orthodox Christians, who refuse to fight, into internment camps, like we did to the Japanese? Would that be another Christian persecution?

            We can not be as Pilate and please all sides, in seeking the Truth. Wars have always been complicated, corrupt, and deceiving, so in some ways I understand the pacifist, yet when my my home and country is threatened, I understand the warrior patriot. Is there a balance between the two?

            Which Kingdom do we seek? The answer, to this question, will decide our fate.

          • Tim R. Mortiss says:

            If “just war” theories were developed by heretics, are they accordingly wrong? Do they have no value?

            I never worry that the airplanes I travel in are being operated by heretics. Nor that my surgeon may be a heretic, or even a Jew.

            • George Michalopulos says:

              Agreed.

            • Michael Bauman says:

              Having studied just war theory at some length real wars never measure up. Never. Recent US wars fail from the get go because there was no proper authority to fight them. WWII failed because of the lack of proportional violence.

              In the end all such theories fail because wars are fundamentally irrational. Just war theory seeks to rationalize the irrational. All that can be done is survive them as best as possible so that repentance is an option. If you die, die with your honor as intact as possible calling on God’s unfailing mercy.

              There is certainly a place in Christ for someone who takes up the sword to protect others from evil.

              • Every so often this subject of war arises – just war theories, pacifism, quotes from the Scripture in support or against, etc. – , and I feel obligated to re-post this…

                War is a microcosm of this present world. It is the ultimate manifestation of the battle in which those of this world are always engaged, albeit stripped of the façade of civility that is commonly referred to as peace. For war is the logical extension of the hatred which results from the struggle over wealth, power, and pride – and their reduction to the essential violence thereof.

                Those who rightly decry the evil of war need look no further for its cause than the hatred, the selfishness, the lust for power and possessions present in each of our everyday lives. For war, like pain, death and the struggle for economic survival, is the inescapable consequence of our common fall into sin. It cannot be avoided whether we are active combatants or civilians. Nor can it be considered “just” from our human point of view, for how is it just that the evil actions or even the apparently justifiable reactions to evil of a few are able to cause the suffering of so many?

                The essential violence of this present world made manifest in war can only serve to reveal what is in the hearts of men altogether aside from political motives for armed conflict. War reveals hate and love, selfishness and sacrifice, cowardice and courage, greed and generosity, pride and humility… All the vices and virtues present in our hearts are brought into sharp relief by the immediacy of the danger of death – to ourselves, our loved ones, our countrymen, our security, our way of life.

                No amount of rationalization can change the fact that all war is evil. But the evil of war is not external to us personally, something at which we can wave our fingers in condemnation. It is the shared lot of humanity. And like all the evils which the providence of God allows us to suffer in common, it can be used for our redemption or our destruction. It all depends on how we respond to Him in the midst of it. War can never be said to be just, but it can be transformed into a means of redemption through the deeds of just men caught up in its torrents.

                “There is a time for everything…”

  3. Sean Richardson says:

    Thank you for your thoughts, George. I, for one, along with every member of my family, have quit watching the NFL, and I will not watch it again until this moronic behavior ceases. I have better things to do on a Sunday (like go to church and spend time with my family) than watch spoiled brats kill the Golden Goose. The last I heard viewership has dropped 10-15%. I know that doesn’t sound like a great deal, but it means 3-4 million people have stopped watching the NFL. And these entitled athletes continue this behavior?

  4. George, Dr. MS will know the study and report but I have the general memory in psych training of learning that the IQ tests had to be revised due to the cultural bias of the test for whites over others in the US. Learning disabilities also not factored in years ago. Therefore Ali likely not truly a 75. Agree with you about other “types” of IQ as well. Also interesting to see John Kennedy, who tested once at 115, I read, being “reevaluated” upward on the internet due to his clear intelligence in speech, etc. Remember those as well with test anxiety who could ace an oral exam at med school and on the floors but froze on tests. Depression also affects performance etc. Too many factors to label folks by these tests!

    Re the NFL, fortunately this decision by athletes to protest in this ungrateful and graceless fashion coincides with definitive info on CTE (chronic traumatic encephalopathy), so my lifelong love of (addiction to) watching football now feels too similar to those going to watch gladiators. We now know the damage being inflicted as we watch. No mas for two good reasons. (Cam Newton’s comment didn’t hurt.)

    • Michael Bauman says:

      Cam Newton’s comment makes perfect sense and does not have to be malicious at all (I have not heard the tone of his voice). 90% of his life since his athletic talent appeared he spends in a male dominated environment. Until quite recently women sports people were mostly there to look good. Those who actually knew football and liked it were rare. They had to fight for position and air time, probably still do.

      Newton’s comment could have been an unscripted moment in which he realized that and simply opened his mouth off script. In his experience it would be unusual. Had he been a person comfortable and fluent speaking in front of others it could have come out as, “Wow, that’s great awomen who knows football. Ought to be more of you.”.

      He is not that person. I believe he got low scores on the Wonderlic test that the NFL uses as part of their draft process. He is also well known for his lack of interpersonal skills.

      Unless the tone of delivery was derisive and malicious, it is just another mock trial by the tryannical media. Another way to take down a person they don’t like anyway. Let us not forget. Newton is a black quarteback. A reality that is still a minority and until the last few years a distinct minority. His diffident and arrogant persona has caused him difficulty with press, coaches and teammates throughout his professional career.

      I think his comment is way over blown. Those that control the narrative want it to be pure social justice warrior Newspeak and those that step outside the paradigm will be savagely attacked for actual honesty.

      It is possible the reporter could have diffused the situation and it’s aftermath but it was more important to play the gender card. I guess in the new NFL the gender card trumps the race card. Cam Newton got gobsmacked by his slave masters and he said, “Yessa master.”

      You do know that George Soros is involved the the NFL players union.

    • M. Stankovich says:

      In response to Nicole’s comment, there are numerous studies that elucidate the various reasons as to why an otherwise intelligent, thoughtful, perhaps insightful – or as a correlate – psychopathic/antisocially personality disordered individual might display paradoxical scores on these “standardized” examinations. The most glaring, as she noted, are those that traditionally reeked of cultural and racial bias, or ignored learning disabilities that in no manner impact intellectual capacity. What does Kaplan and Sadock’s Handbook of Psychiatry (the reference bible of would-be psychiatrists) teach psychiatry residents in the chapter, “The Examination of the Psychiatry Patient,” about evaluating intelligence? Short of formal testing for cognitive deficits and learning disabilities, focus on vocabulary and what is referred to as the “basic fund of information” as the rough-guide to intellectual functioning: below-average, average, above-average. Are there basic criteria offered? Yes. Is this somewhat subjective? Certainly. Am I admitting to Harvard Law School? No. I am informing a treatment provider my impression so as to provide for your care. As near as I can tell, George Soros cannot purchase a better basic fund of information than you walked in the door with. End of story.

  5. Mark E. Fisus says:

    I stand for the anthem with hand over my heart. I also believe we should take a hard look at why blacks are disproportionately mistreated by police – which is why all his started to begin with. The two are not mutually exclusive. I’m an American, and so are our long-suffering black compatriots.

    • They’re not disproportionately mistreated by the police; that is a damnable lie. Black men do disproportionately commit violent crime. Instead of always blaming “the Man” for all of their self created problems they need to take responsibility for their own lives.

      • George Michalopulos says:

        Unfortunately Cyprian, you are correct.

      • M. Stankovich says:

        This is a fascinating “damnable lie” because mistreatment by the police has no correlation with the disproportionate rate of violent crimes committed. If you were to actually examine citizen complaints of mistreatment at the hands of the police, while it is true that complaints of mistreatment filed by African Americans occur at a rate 3x greater than whites (but isn’t that the basis of the disproportionality claim?), it is next to impossible to find any descriptive statistics that support a contention that it is correlated with disproportionate arrests or convictions for crime, violent or otherwise. Further, it would appear that this conclusion – a correlation with violent crime – fails to account for the full spectrum of mistreatment (e.g. denying medical care to a detainee, coerced confessions, sexual misconduct, unjustified searches, intimidation, harassment, bribery, and so on), on and off-duty, for which citizen complaints are being filed. What I find quite surprising, given the fact that there is frequently a disparity of racial diversity among peace officers in general, the complaints filed against white officers is barely 2x greater than are being filed against black officers nationally. Now unless you are privy to actual data – and particularly data gathered since the advent of mandatory body cameras and dashboard cameras that have corroborated citizen claims that were ordinarily dismissed out of hand, and in effect worthless – I conclude your contention is incorrect. In fact, damnably incorrect.

        • George Michalopulos says:

          Dr S, I don’t dispute a word you write here. You are however, describing penultimate phenomena here. The ultimate question is “why”? As in why is there so much interface between the African-American community and the judicial system in the first place?

          The answers of course involve a host of etiologies, including the legacy of slavery, the destructive policies of the welfare state, the undercutting of the wage-earning potential of the black working poor by untrammeled illegal immigration, and so on.

          • No George. As you know, I stand second to none in my respect and admiration for Dr. Stankovich, but I take issue with virtually every sentence he has written in his post. Dr. Stankovich is outstanding, wonderful,, and laudable, but he is not infallible, and in this post, he struck out. I have been guilty of putting this fine man on a pedestal. Of course, I’m sure he never wanted that.

            • George Michalopulos says:

              Cyprian, nobody ever said Dr S was infallible (or anybody else for that matter). Am I missing something? Please elucidate so I don’t make the same mistake again.

              • George,
                You wrote that you didn’t dispute a word he had written in his post. I dispute every word he has written. He’s no longer getting a free pass from me. I’m going to use a magnifying glass to everything he writes from now on. He can trumpet all the Biblical Greek he wants; so what? Some people would call that showboating. I have read and reread many of his posts on this forum and on another web site. I detect a great deal of arrogance, and condescension on his part. I have yet to read of an apology or the words . “I was wrong,” from him.
                Now, I already know that he is going to become nasty and vitriolic toward me, but I’ll be waiting and will respond one hundred times harder in return. By the way, is he a medical doctor or just a licensed social worker? Michael, I hear you’re looking for me; well, here I am. Don’t forget, I’m the cat, and you’re the mouse. You have no conception of what you are getting yourself into. If I were you, I’d retire.

                • M. Stankovich says:

                  Cyprian, dear one, “here I am?” No, brother, you are the quintessential emboldened-behind-the-wall-of-anonymity internet creep who is what, “gunning” for me out of integrity? I’m looking for you? The only reason I even took the time to respond to your racist comment is that our patients are continually harassed by the police on their way to the trolley and buses coming & going to work, coming and going to church, coming and going to medical appointments. Twice I’ve been asked for ID when I was walking them to the park for rec, with an agency ID hanging around my neck. It’s humiliating and harrassment. And their message is plain as day, “We’ll catch you. Not today. Maybe not tomorrow. But eventually, we’ll catch you.” And how do they justify this cynical, racist, illegal intrusion into their lives? Just like you did: “They disproportionately commit violent crime, ” and “they need to take responsibility for their own lives.” And some do just that. “Not today. Maybe not tomorrow. But eventually, we’ll catch you.”

                  I have no conception what I’m getting myself into? When someone lacks the fundamental capacity to address issues at the level of merit – debate at the level of data and scholarship – and resorts to going at me personally and anonymously, you have revealed yourself: coward, creep, and internet punk. Bon jour et bon chance. The only cat you are is a “fraidy” cat. You waste my time and energy.

          • Bishop Tikhon (Fitzgerald) says:

            “penultimate phenomena,” George, really?Are you sure such phenomena are not located in the subpenultimate?

            • M. Stankovich says:

              εὐλόγειte ὁ κύριος!

              Vladyka, I was thinking sub specie aeternitatis (Spinoza) but then again, I much prefer being called Michael than “Dr.” and enjoy the easy chair over the pedestal (one cannot account for taste). I hope you are well. I have some books I know you would enjoy. Let me know.

              • Michael,
                I would like to know if you really are a doctor. On linkedin, there is no record of you ever having practiced medicine. It says that you are a licensed social worker. On linkedin, it says you received a medical degree from the Sorbonne Universities, but there’s no date. Also, from what I could tell, the Sorbonne Universities did not award medical degrees. I know you know Greek because you have unnecessarily shown off your knowledge a plethora of times, but , then again, big deal. Basically, I’m wondering if you have lied about your credentials. If you have, knock it off. You once wrote you can smell a con man a mile away; you know the saying; “it takes one to know one.”

                • Michael Bauman says:

                  Cyprian, Michael’s credentials have been reviewed ad nauseum on this site in the past. He is an intelligent and qualified Orthodox Christian. While I don’t always agree with everything he says, questioning his credentials is not the way to address the issues you may have.

                  So, take another tack.

                • M. Stankovich says:

                  I’ve been on this site since 2011, and although it seems like a yearly pattern, I could be exaggerating. But it seems like yearly, some anonymous, ego-compromised thug who speaks definitively from the hip, loudly & aggressively, can’t seem to tolerate being corrected by empirical data, and responds by scoping me personally with bushels of their own faggotry: I’m a fraud, I’m arrogant, one claimed I was a child molester (after I challenged a statement about the supposed correlation with homosexuality), I’m a heretic, I’m a member of a cabal set on undermining the Church, one didn’t like my haircut!. All of this bluster, all of this hoohah, all of this empty spraying of distempered testosterone for what, exactly? For me presenting data of which I am not even the author! BANG! I’m wearing 9 (count em’, NINE) layers of Kevlar, you moron!

                  Cyprian, the bottom-line is this: whatever your fantasy, you are so out of your league to address me in such a disrespectful manner it literally disgusts and nauseates me. I have explicitly answered your “questions” numerous times on this site and on Fr. Hans’ as well. Look for it. Long ago I provided Mr. Michalopulos a copy of my ID from the CA Dept. Corrections & Rehabilitation that has been investigated by the Dept. of Justice, Homeland Security, and the CA Dept. of Justice verifying my “credentials.”

                  I did not deserve to be spoken to by you in such a disrespectful manner simply because I rightly corrected you, nor do you deserve the “explanation” I have provided you.

          • George,
            Dr. Stankovich says that there is frequently a disparity of racial diversity among peace officers in general. Wrong! Black people comprise 12.3 % of the US population, and 12% of the nation’s police departments. When you factor in all the hispanic police officers, and females, his contention is proven to have no basis in fact. Statistics also show that black police officers are much more likely to arrest black criminal suspects, than are their white counterparts. He states that I am damnably incorrect; I think not. This is the problem with extremely intelligent polymaths, they think they are an authority on everything. While Dr. Stankovich has extremely impressive credentials, and his knowledge of Biblical Greek is second to none on this forum, and he’s a strong, erudite Orthodox Christian, his assertions are incorrect.

            • George Michalopulos says:

              Yeah, mostly right re the stats Cyp.

              • Not mostly right. I am 100% right.

                • M. Stankovich says:

                  The ratio of officers to racial presence in the population is an especially naive assumption. According to a 2016 report of the US Dept, of Justice, there are approximately 110,00 Black police officers in the United States, 33% of whom are all found in just seven US cities. In at least 50 US cities with a population of 100,000 or more, the percentage of Black officers is less than half the percentage of Blacks represented in that community. In at least 100 US cities with at least 500 police officers employed, there is an equally wide gap between between the percentage of Black officers employed and the percentage of Blacks represented in that community. I stand by the validity of my original statement, “”given the fact that there is frequently a disparity of racial diversity among peace officers in general, the complaints filed against white officers is barely 2x greater than are being filed against black officers nationally.”

        • This post here proves that not even the illustrious and erudite Dr. Stankovich is infallible. No offense Dr. Stankovich, but this post reads like it was written by some lawyer from Black Lives Matter. When the bar is set so high, it can be easy to disappoint. With all due respect, I’m disappointed. Even the great Babe Ruth struck out once in a while.

        • M. Stankovich says:

          Don’t play this “illustrious, erudite, and infallible” bullshit with me. You seem quite content to tag me with “erudition” when you agree with me, apparently not so much when there are a few “problems” with your reasoning. Hey, and sorry for your “disappointment.” Savants come with no warranties.

          You made the statement, “They’re not disproportionately mistreated by the police.” I took the “they,” based on the general conversation, to be Blacks/African Americans (I note that in your last post you analogize me as a “lawyer from Black Lives Matter,” whatever…). I then reasoned that disproportional mistreatment could be approximated from the proportion of actual complaints of mistreatment filed against the police, and I looked at the data posted for NYC, Chicago, Dade Co./Miami, San Diego, LA, St. Louis, and Dallas specifically, and several cites that collect data generally. As noted, Blacks have consistently filed citizen complaints against peace officers at a rate 3x greater than Caucasians. At this point, we have an indisputable fact: African Americans claim disproportionate mistreatment at a rate 3x that of any other racial group.

          In addressing the indisputable fact that African Americans claim disproportionate mistreatment at a rate 3x that of any other racial group you say, “that is a damnable lie,” and apparently defend this contention by stating, “Black men do disproportionately commit violent crime.” In other words, these claims of “mistreatment” are nothing more than the irresponsible “whinings” of criminals who got caught – akin to those scenes every night on the reruns of Cops (“I ain’t did nothin’. Why you up on me? I wants a lawyer”) – and, “they need to take responsibility for their own lives?” Pardon me, but my point was that this was the damnable lie.

          If I was incorrect in stating there is a virtual absence of descriptive statistics as to who is making claims of mistreatment beyond the identification of race, I would have expected you to correct me with data, not bore me with stereotypy and passive aggressive pats on the head. Instead, you proceed off on a tangent about racial diversity in law enforcement in a parlor trick called “sleight of hand.” Help me out, Mr. Michalopulos, as you will best recall the Tony Award winning musical Oklahoma. Oscar & Hammerstein was it not? There is a guitar-playing scene that is tremendous fun, but I can’t recall the lyric: “Pick a little, talk a little, pick a little, talk a little” then was it, “cheep, cheep, cheep, talk a lot, pick a little more,” or was it, “cheap, cheap, cheap, talk a lot, pick a little more?” I’m hoping it was “cheep” and not “cheap” so can learn something! And between me and you, Mr. Michalopulos, I’m no polymath, but a δΰμάςς. Keep it to yourself.

          • George Michalopulos says:

            Dr S, whenever someone has an interface with law enforcement and yells “mistreatment”, I reach for my back pocket to see if my wallet is still there. Long story short: the vast majority of malefactors yell this word (or some variant thereof) when they’re apprehended.

            • George,
              He’s not a doctor; he’s a licensed social worker.

              • Monk James says:

                You don’t know Michael Stankovich’s whole story, ‘Cyprian’, and it’s unkind of you to minimize him here with an insinuation whose implications you can’t imagine.

              • M. Stankovich says:

                Sorbonne Universités, UPMC (Université Pierre et Marie Curie), Faculté de médecine Pierre et Marie Curie. Also know colloquially as “Paris VI.” Usually ranked within the top 15 teaching institutions by US News & World Report. I did my residency at Saint Vincent Catholic Medical Center in Greenwich Village in NYC, which had the single largest HIV/AIDS clinic on the east coast during the first epidemic that became a holocaust. I was diagnosed with an aggressive familial form of colon cancer near the end of my residency, and in my estimation, suffered horribly for two years, then suffered a recurrence shortly thereafter. I chose not to return to the active practice of medicine for the time being, but earned an MSW and an MPH. My diploma continues to state MD and says “Cum Laude,” at the top of my class. I continue to be a licensed physician in France where I plan to retire and perhaps practice when I return. I did not “owe” you this response, Cyprian, and I did not deserve your disrespect because you are “affronted” at me correcting your error. Don’t address me again.

            • M. Stankovich says:

              Mr. Michalopulos,

              I have searched long and hard for descriptive statistics of those who actually report, and I am unable to find any characteristic beyond race. I agree that it would be interesting – and obviously telling – to see how many of these citizen complaints are being made by those being placed under arrest, those with criminal backgrounds, and so on. But I also see the value in withholding this information as being unnecessarily prejudicial.

              The law clearly allows “investigative detention” or what NYC made famous with their clearly abusive “stop & frisk” interpretation of the Supreme Court decision, Terry v. Ohio, 392 U.S. 1 (1967):

              a brief, temporary involuntary detention of a person suspected of being involved in criminal activity for the purpose of investigating the potential criminal violation. In order to lawfully conduct a Terry stop, a law enforcement officer must have “reasonable suspicion,” which has been defined as “articulable facts” that would lead a reasonable officer to conclude that criminal activity is afoot. More than an unsupported hunch but less than probable cause and even less than a preponderance of the evidence.

              And to quote the law directly,

              …an officer may, consistent with the Fourth Amendment, conduct a brief, investigatory stop when the officer has a reasonable, articulable suspicion that criminal activity is afoot …a police officer may in appropriate circumstances and in an appropriate manner approach a person for the purpose of investigating possible criminal behavior even though there is no probable cause to make an arrest. [emphasis mine]

              The question of appropriateness, obviously, is open to interpretation. As I noted above, prior to the mandatory use of use of body cams and dashboard cams, there was no independent, objective check on appropriateness, and as investigations in the State of NJ have recently revealed, citizen claims were capriciously and arbitrarily dismissed at the first step of investigations.. Personally, I trust in the overall integrity of the police, and cams will begin to weed out problem & renegade officers who are frequently responsible for the majority of legitimate claims, and eliminate false claims.

        • Peter Ray Millman says:

          Stankovich,
          Where do you get off calling me a racist? It shows you don’t know what you are talking about.

          • Peter Ray Millman says:

            Michael Stankovich irresponsibly accused me of making a racist statement. That is the first and only time in my entire life that anyone has ever accused me of racism. When I was on facebook, I had five thousand facebook friends, and over eight hundred four followers; many of whom were black people(men and women) from the US and all over the world. Every single exchange whether in reactions to my posts or private messages were extremely friendly and positive.

            For several years, I was a member of the NAACP in solidarity with my African American brothers and sisters. When I discovered their involvement with Planned Parenthood, I terminated my membership. Not only was Michael Stankovich totally wrong when he accused me of making a racist comment, but he was also completely wrong when he challenged my unimpeachable contention that black men are not targeted by law enforcement for police brutality, murder. and violence.There is a very good article on National Review whose title states Black Men Are Not Targeted by Police.

            Read the article; it presents very truthful information to substantiate what all learned, unbiased people already know. Every single line I wrote in post was 100% correct and truthful. I will compare my civil rights record every single day of the week with Michael Stankovich’s. Michael, you got my disrespect toward you the old fashioned way; you earned it- and you own it.

            • M. Stankovich says:

              I did not call you a racist and I have not accused you of racism. You presented a conclusion for which there is no definitive evidence: a correlation between citizen complaints of disproportional mistreatment and the fact that African American males commit a disproportional amount of violent crime cannot be made. I read both recent articles on the National Review website (“Police Aren’t Targeting and Killing Black Men,” and “Police Violence Against Black Men is Rare: Here’s What the Data Actually Says”) and while interesting, neither speak to the spectrum of disproportional mistreatment. The later article – which certainly would be more pertinent to the argument, relies completely on crime victim interviews conducted between 2005-2011, long before the corroborating support of police body cams and dashboard cams as evidence. Therefore, both you and Mr. Michalopulos have reached a similar conclusion as to those who are claiming mistreatment: Black man who have disproportionally committed violent crimes. With no descriptive statistics to challenge the veracity of this claim, you have drawn an opinion based solely and completely on race. Like it or not, this is a racist statement. And you own it, Peter, because that is what you said. If this is not what you intended to say, than correct yourself. I object to you saying I have been irresponsible or by you attempting to justify your disrespect. I, more than anyone on this site, have always defended you when when you are correct. But in this case you are wrong.

              • Michael S and Peter M I remember Billy Martin back when he was in Oakland kicking up dirt at the old empires yelling profanities, it was much more fun than listening to you two.

                Life must be mighty fine for both you to get so easily offended, and offend on a blog. This site is a good pastime if one does not take it or get too personal. Yes I am guilty as well, and have tried to take it back a notch from my beginnings here. If we can see unwarranted attacks upon us as blessings, and forgive. My how blessed we would be.

                Like the title to one of my favorite movies.
                Life is beautiful!
                Enjoy the game folks!

                • Peter Ray Millman says:

                  Thank you Dino.

                  • You’re welcome, and thank you as well, Peter. True Christian spirit always gets the better of you in the end.

                    • Peter Ray Millman says:

                      Thank you, Dino, for the very kind words. To be honest with you, I’ve been in a very cranky mood for almost a month. Less than a month ago, our family suffered a terrible tragedy. Our family is very close knit. Unfortunately, my dear cousin Georgie died totally unexpectedly due to choking to death on a large piece of steak. It’s taking me much longer than I expected to get over his loss; I should say I can’t wrap my head around the idea that he died. I’m not looking for sympathy or anything; but it takes me a long time to get over the loss of close loved ones. It took me five years to get over the loss of my late Dad- and I still haven’t gotten over the loss of my dear Uncle George which was three and one half years ago. When I think how Georgies’ death would have destroyed my uncle had he been alive; it fills me with sadness. In honor of the both of them, I’m rooting for the New York Yankees this year. Everyone of us has problems and suffer the loss of dear loved ones. My problems are no more important than anyone else’s. Lord have mercy on us all. Thank you brother.

                    • George Michalopulos says:

                      Peter, may their memories be eternal!

                  • Peter,
                    That we gain wisdom with age is great, but the down side is witnessing our loved ones pass. Take comfort that even our Lord cried with the passing of Lazarus, and joy in his resurrection.

                • M. Stankovich says:

                  Dino,

                  About 5-weeks ago, I was walking from my office to go pick up a prescription, crossing the street with the flashing right of way, caught up in my own thoughts and apparently not moving fast enough for an older white man in a new BMW who wanted to turn right in front of me or behind me. His golf clubs were in the back seat, and when I caught on, he was shaking his fist at me. As I was about 15-feet from the curb, he gunned his accelerator, his passenger mirror struck me in the chest spinning me around so that his rear tire ran over my foot, and he screeched off. I managed to memorize his license his plate and walked into a medical clinic on the corner (the whole area surrounds a large hospital) to write it down. I then proceeded to the ER. As I was walking, an African American woman in a new BMW pulled up and told me she witnessed the whole event, had filmed part of it on her phone, and gave me her number to give to the police. The clinic had called the ER and told them to expect me, and had called the police.

                  When I arrived at the ER, the officers were officers I knew well enough because they had frequently responded to psychiatric emergencies at my program, as well as other emergencies. I explained what had happened, described the individual and his car in detail, and gave them the license number and the witness’ number. They were silent. Then one said, “He’s probably not from around here.” I asked the significance of that reply and he said, “He’d be hard to catch and it’s his word against yours. And maybe he just didn’t see you.” WAT! The ER docs came with a wheelchair and I had to go with them. The police said “We’ll run the plates.” I had bruises & contusions to my ribs, and a number of broken toes. When I came out the police were gone. I called dispatch and they sent a disinterested cop who hadn’t been there previously, and only when I got really angry did he call and find out that the previous officers didn’t believe I was serious about pursuing this man, so they “disposed” of the license plate number and the witness contact information. And this guy is asking me, “If I take take a report, are you really going to show up in court?” And when he leaves, a dozen of my patients at the periphery console me by telling me “That’s pretty cold how they treated you, but you can get used to it.” Really? And we’re not talking about violence committed against them. The mistreatment is the everyday disrespect, intrusion, and harassment that comes from the cynical, callous, and even racist belief that, “Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but eventually, we’ll catch you.”

                  Pardon me, Dino. I do not see this as an “intellectual” or academic exercise that needs to be won in a talent show. I have devoted myself to helping men who spent a considerable part of their lives engaged in criminal thinking, to stop, take a breath, consider the consequences, and then make mature, healthy decision.

                  • George Michalopulos says:

                    Dr S, we’re glad you’re OK!

                  • M. Stankovich,

                    Sincerely, I pray you have a speedy recovery. In case you you didn’t notice, I was not part of the good cop, bad cop, debate. I simply tried to help two men,”…take a breath, consider the consequences, and then make mature, healthy decision.” Pardon me, for trying to be the peacemaker. Again God’s speed in your recovery, and hopefully some justice, for that jerk that ran into you, and those cops trying to protect either one of their own or some big wig.

                  • Peter Ray Millman says:

                    Well, Michael, after reading your post about your experience with your local police department after you suffered painful injuries from a driver apparently suffering from road rage, I did some online investigating into your local police department. It was eye opening. The department has a very poor reputation with many citizen complaints along with serious allegations of police misconduct and corruption. I also watched a youtube about the department’s alleged corruption and criminal behavior. I hope that you are recovering from your injuries, and that you get justice from the judicial system along with compensation for your pain and suffering. May God bless you and be with you.

                    By the way, I forgive you for accusing me of making a racist statement; you know what our Lord said,” Out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaketh,” and for your seeming stubbornness. In turn, I ask you to forgive me for my rancid comments, anger, rage and disrespect toward you. I apologize for offending your sense of honor and questioning your integrity. I hope this helps because these words of mine are sincere. We are supposed to be brothers in Christ.

                    If these comments aren’t satisfactory to you, please let me know what we should do to heal this rift between us.

                    • Peter Ray Millman says:

                      This is in reply to Dino’s post concerning the Apostle Paul. Thank you, kind brother, for the uplifting scripture passage. Also, thank you for your attempts at peacemaking. ” Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called the sons of God.” I have learned from you, and am thankful that you are my brother in Christ. Lord, have mercy on me a sinner.

                    • Peter M, You’re welcome, we must always check ourselves from violent tempers, a Greek DNA flaw I’m sure. I try my best, to control myself from prideful arrogance but fail at times. Thank you for your example of repeated repentance, a good example of always getting back up no matter how many time our sinfulness and the demons knock us down. Never take your eye off the mark, Peter, and never let anyone steer you to a sinful state no matter how disrespectful they may seem. It is their sin, don’t join in. Help them as your brother or sister in Christ.
                      “Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand.”-Philippians 4:5

                  • I’m not normally the sappy type, but I am moved by this expression of reconciliation. How good and pleasant it is…

                    • “Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended;but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3:13

                    • Peter Ray Millman says:

                      Brian,
                      Thank you for the very kind words; I am moved by our brother Dino’s efforts toward peacemaking and reconciliation.

                    • Peter Ray Millman says:

                      This post is to Dino,
                      We should all follow your Godly, Christ like example- especially me. Thank you very much; it’s an honor for me to call you a brother.

  6. M. Stankovich says:

    Many of the comments here speak to the state of our society as portrayed in the New York Times Bestseller of 1978 The Culture of Narcisissism, by Professor Christopher Lasch, and brought to our attention on a dreary Friday morning by Fr. Alexander Schmemann. I personally have no idea how the man had the time to keep abreast of current literature, but he did. Secondly, I could not imagine how such a scathing indictment of our society ever reached the NYTimes Bestseller List, nor managed to stay their for so long, but it did. It it is prophetical, it is shocking, it true today as it was so many years ago, and I highly recommend it.

    Of interest here is a chapter he wrote entitled, The Degradation of Sports, he immediately points out something quite primal:

    Among the activities through which men seek release from everyday life, games offer in many ways the purest form of escape. Like sex, drugs, and drink, they obliterate awareness of everyday reality, but they do this not by dimming awareness but by raising it to a new intensity of concentration. Moreover, they have no side effects, hangovers, or emotional complications. Games simultaneously satisfy the need for free fantasy and the search for gratuitous difficulty; they combine childlike exuberance with deliberately created complications. By establishing conditions of equality among the players, according to Roger Caillois, games attempt to substitute ideal conditions for “the normal confusion of everyday life.” They re-create the freedom, the remembered perfection of childhood, and mark it off from ordinary life with artificial boundaries, within which the only constraints are the rules to “which the players freely submit. Games enlist skill “and intelligence, the utmost concentration of purpose, on behalf of activities utterly useless, which make no contribution to the struggle of man against nature, to the wealth or comfort of the community, or to its physical survival.

    If you stop and think, the Greeks filled their lives with the “fantasy” and “catharsis” of the theater, believing that comedy appealed to the intellect and tragedy appealed to the emotions, and that fantasy – not the debauchery, and violence, and horror our modern media has become – the ability to laugh and to cry, were fundamentally healthy and helpful.

    But as Lasch continues that in pointing out the evolution of the “discomfort” with games, with fantasy, the “uselessness of games makes them offensive to social reformers, improvers of public morals, or functionalist critics of society like Veblen, who saw in the futility of upper-class sports anachronistic survivals of militarism and prowess.” He points out that, early on, President John F. Kennedy initiated the “Youth Council,” because “our consistent decline of strength & fitness” as measured by school standardized testing (and those of us of a certain age, Mr. Michalopulos, will recall Coach Bud Wilkerson of the U. of Oklahoma – correct my spelling if I am wrong – appointed by JFK – appearing in short films guiding these elementary school tests of sit-ups, push-ups, and pull-ups, and I’ll never forget Chicken Fat!. “Our growing softness, our increasing lack of physical fitness,” said JFK, “is a menace to our security.” Simultaneously, Castro responded by stating that “sport should be considered part of the “inseparable element of education, culture, health, defense, happiness and the development of people and a new society.” Certainly not to be outdone, the Central Committee of the Soviet Communist Party declared that sport should be consciously used “as a means of rallying the broad masses of workers and peasants around the various Party Soviet and Trade Union organizations through which the masses of workers and peasants are to be drawn into social and political activity.” And everyone condemned “spectatorship.”

    What we have discovered, however, is that “Games quickly lose their charm when forced into the service of education, character development, or social improvement,” and that “games are ‘pointlessly glorious,’ and the thrill of pure contest can be an emotional experience nearly as exhausting as participation itself.” Instead,

    The degradation of sport, then, consists not in its being taken too seriously but in its trivialization. Games derive their power from the investment of seemingly trivial activity with serious intent. By submitting without reservation to the rules and conventions of the game, the players (and the spectators too) cooperate in creating an illusion of reality. In this way the game becomes a representation of life, and play takes on the character of playacting as well. In our time, games—sports in particular—are rapidly losing the quality of illusion. Uneasy in the presence of fantasy and illusion, our age seems to have resolved on the destruction of the harmless substitute gratifications that formerly provided charm and consolation. In the case of sports, the attack on illusion comes from players, promoters, and spectators alike. The players, eager to present themselves as entertainers (partly in order to justify their inflated salaries), deny the seriousness of sport. Promoters urge fans to become rabid parti“sans, even in sports formerly ruled by decorum, such as tennis. Television creates a new audience at home and makes “live” spectators into participants who mug for the camera and try to attract its attention by waving banners commenting on the action not on the field but in the press box.

    And finally,

    Commercialization has turned play into work, subordinated the athlete’s pleasure to the spectator’s, and reduced the spectator himself to a state of vegetative passivity—the very antithesis of the health and vigor sport ideally promotes. The mania for winning has encouraged an exaggerated emphasis on the competitive side of sport, to the exclusion of the more modest but more satisfying experiences of cooperation and competence. The cult of victory, proclaimed by such football coaches as Vince Lombardi and George Allen, has made savages of the players and rabid chauvinists of their followers. The violence and partisanship of modern sports lead some critics to insist that athletics impart militaristic values to the young, irrationally inculcate local and national pride in the spectator, and serve as one of the strongest bastions of male chauvinism.

    We have lost our comfortability and our ease with fantasy, with the cathartic play of “escape” and illusion, and in fact have come to believe there is something wrong, unhealthy, unwholesome, perhaps even sinful about enjoying the several hours of “escape” sports afford us. While I am sure someone can quote me a father(s) who will, by analogy, condemn the unsavory Olympic competition. the theater in general, blah, blah, blah, this is a foolish path to travel. Prof. Lasch’s conclusion strikes me as very wise:

    Play has always, by its very nature, set itself off from workaday life; yet it retains an organic connection with the life of the community, by virtue of its capacity to dramatize reality and to offer a convincing representation of the community’s values. The ancient connections between games, ritual, and public festivity suggest that although games take place within arbitrary boundaries, they are nevertheless rooted in shared traditions to which they give objective expression. Games and athletic contests offer a dramatic commentary on reality rather “than an escape from it—a heightened reenactment of communal traditions, not a repudiation of them. It is only when games and sports come to be valued purely as a form of escape that they lose the capacity to provide this escape.

    • George Michalopulos says:

      As usual, well said, Dr S.

      • Yes, what Dr. Stankovich said is undeniably true and eloquently stated, but I’d be interested in knowing if he’s a sports fan.

        • M. Stankovich says:

          Cyprian,

          Let me put it to you this way: my dear brother Papoutsis took me to dinner on an oppressively hot & humid night in Chicago before we took in what was probably the lamest American League game between the White Sox & the Mariners on, of all things, “Elvis Night” (the Cubs were out of town). In turn, we took a selfie and sent it to the baseball fan of baseball fans – the Dean of the Holy Trinity Orthodox Seminary, Fr. Alexander Webster, who graciously invited us to join him for a game when on his coast. Is it possible to emerge from the entrance tunnel to your seat section and not be struck dizzy by the stadium lights, or hear the 90-mph fastball hit the catcher’s glove, or see the swing and hear the “crack” as the ball rises into the lights and everyone rises from their seats and… foul. If I brought someone there with a frontal lobe injury or impairment, they would see a grown man throwing and another man attempting to hit, a ball. To what end and for what purpose? None whatsoever. Pardonez? For fun, for childhood-like delight, for foolishness, for catharsis, for relaxation, for nothing! “BE-AH HE-AH! Get your ice cold be-ah!” they would yell in the old Yankee Stadium, just hoping you would get to see Billy Martin fly out of the dug-out and go toe-to-toe with the home plate umpire. Are you sensing a pattern here, Cyprian? Straighten this jamoke out, Papoutsis! Tell him we didn’t actually go to the Chicago Medical Museum and watch human brains float in fomalin fixation…

          • Peter A. Papoutsis says:

            Michael is a total sports fan, and we did see a lame baseball game, but the fellowship we had that night was great. I’m still trying to find a way to get out to the west coast to hang with Michael and pay him back foe coming to the Midwest.

            Ps stay safe out in California Michael. The reports of the wildfires ate truly terrifying.

            Peter

    • Peter A. Papoutsis says:

      Well said indeed.

  7. Estonian Slovak says:

    Oh, please. You’ve said hateful things about Fr. Seraphim Rose and praised the Papacy. I guess you didn’t hear of the Spanish Inquisition, did you? What about the killing of one million Orthodox Serbs with the knowledge of Papist clergy and in some cases, their participation? Didn’t you just call for the outlawing of Islam here in the states? How will you accomplish this? By non-violent means? Heed Bishop Tikhon’s advice and get a life in Christ.

    • Estonian Slovak,

      Why so much hatred? We all need to follow Christ without slandering and calumniating others. I will pray for you as I ask for your prayers.

  8. George Michalopulos says:

    To all: let’s dial it back a notch or two? We’re all brethren on this site so let’s act like it. Try to answer the argument or the assertion (or opinion) without reverting to personal insults. Lord knows I’ve tried and hopefully have succeeded. Let’s be as gentle as doves but as wise as serpents.

    Please.