All These Moments

All These Moments

Random ramblings in writing.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

About the Heisman

This isn't really a legit post, I just thought I'd share an interesting quote about the Heisman Trophy that I saw:

"The most remarkable thing about the Heisman Trophy race, which Oklahoma quarterback Sam Bradford won last Saturday, is not that Florida quarterback Time Tebow recieved the most first-place votes yet finished third or that Bradford's marigin of victory over Texas quarterback Colt McCoy and Tebow was slimmer than an Olsen twin. It was that the Heisman fate of the three QB's was essentially decided six weeks ago in Lubbock, Texas, on a single play--a play that involved none of them.

Think about it. If Texas Tech wideout Michael Crabtree had not hauled in a 28-yd pass from Graham Harrell and tightroped into the end zone with one second lef,t giving the Red Raiders a 39-33 victory over Texas on Nov. 1, the Heisman voting would almost certainly been dramatically different. Texas would probably have emerged with a 33-32 victory (a game-winning 45 yard field goal would have been a long shot for Texas Tech), and considering the way they rolled over their final three regular-season opponents, the Longhorns would likely have completed a 12-0 regular season. That would have made McCoy the quarterback of the undefeated No. 1 team in the nation and the almost surefire Heisman winner.

That's not to say that Bradford, who threw 48 touchdown passes, was anything but a deserving recipient, or that Tebow, whose versatility and leadership are the main reasons the Gators will play in the BCS championship game on Jan. 8, wasn't worthy of a second Heisman. It merely shows the folly in trying to choose the "most outstanding" college football player in the nation, or ever the best quarterback, which is what the Heisman has become in the recent years. Winning the award takes individual and team achievement, and quite often a fortuitous combination of circumstances that even a trio of take-charge quarterbacks are powerless to control. One play can change everything, and sometimes the winner doesn't even have to be the one that makes it."

Friday, December 05, 2008

Obama & Lincoln

Talking about how much Barack Obama is like Abraham Lincoln seems to be the cool thing to do lately, but I don't quite see it. I have to wonder if the people comparing Obama to our sixteenth president know anything about Lincoln's presidency, or instead picture a mythical figure ending American slavery with the power of hope.

Abraham Lincoln suspended civil liberties and wielded an unprecedented amount of power during his presidency. Lincoln declared a blockade on Southern ports three months before Congress had declared war, he spent without Congressional approval, and he suspended habeas corpus and imprisoned suspected Confederate sympathizers without trial. Lincoln was essentially a king, which is awesome by the way.

The fact is that Abraham Lincoln would not bat an eye at the Patriot Act, and the amount of executive power during the Bush administration pales in comparison to Lincoln's. In fact, Lincoln's practice of imprisoning suspected Confederate sympathizers without trial is essentially a form of McCarthyism.

Since McCarthyism is such a toxic word, it is probably necessary for me to specify that I do not mean to criticize Lincoln. Many of his decisions certainly fall into a grey area, but at the end of it all the Union was preserved and Congress regained power over the executive branch.

It seems to me that people love to compare Obama to Lincoln because people love lavishing laudations of the man, but they must grope for something to praise since Obama has been elected president before he really accomplished anything concrete. Comparing him to one of our greatest presidents seems to have filled this void. What disturbs me most is how much people praise him before he has even been sworn into office. Could we at least wait until he has been president for a few years before busting out the champagne and celebrating him as a president of Lincoln's caliber?

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My name is Jared and I'm an English major at UT. Politically I'm a mix of libertarian and neocon with a heavy dose of sarcasm. Otherwise I'm just a typical nerd.

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