A few days ago my oldest daughter asked me if there were really evil people in the world.
When an 8 year old comes to you and asks you that, you can't help but to believe that they have finally taken one of the steps that you fear above all others. The step towards being aware that the world isn't a place where, as their parent, you can always keep them safe and protect them every moment of the day.
Today we heard about one of the most terrible acts of gun violence in our countries history. Not all of the details are available, but they really don't need to be. 20 small children and 6 adults (along with the shooter) are dead because someone took a weapon into a school and used it on all of those people.
While this is an absolutely amazing country, it is very clear that we have some problems that we need to deal with and it's sad to realize that, in our current state, we cannot even try to address an unbelievable problem such as this because of the elected officials that we have at the moment. More often than not, our elected leaders act without our interests at heart and make decisions that seem only fit to serve the very wealthy or the very influential. This has to stop.
An incident such as this should make us pause and think about the direction that we need to move our elected leaders towards.
Without a doubt, we need a better gun control policy, and along with that, we need to work to eliminate the culture that glorifies and allows people to purchase and obtain weapons, armaments, and protective devices (such as bulletproof vests) that have little to no purpose in our society.
We need a system to help diagnose people with serious mental issues and prevent them from obtaining the weapons that they would use to do harm on others.
We need a health care system that takes care of every person in our country, so that these sort of mental issues can be diagnosed as soon as possible so that these people can get the help that they need.
Without resolving all of these issues, we will continue to hear of horrifying incidents of violence and that makes America a much worse place to be than it should be.
A few days ago, my daughter did ask me about whether there were evil people in the world.
On that day I told her, "Yes, there are evil people in the world, but there are so many more good people, and the good ones do everything that they can to make sure that the evil ones don't harm everyone else."
Today we need to start to prove that we are the good people and start on a path to make sure that the evil people can do harm no more.
Man, you take a look at the post log and see that you haven't posted in far too long. No real explanation for it, just been doing a lot of things at home and such. Let's try and catch up.
- Now that the NCAA has handed down it's penalties to Penn State, it's clear to see that nothing like this could or would ever happen again. I'm sure the loss of money and bowl bids will make sure that no university will ever put their own prestige and pride ahead of the need to do the right thing again. Glad that's all done.
- One thing that Dan missed with his post about the EA exclusivity lawsuit was the fact that EA cannot negotiate an exclusive deal with the NCAA for the next 5 years.
I don't think it will matter as the only one with the means to make any NCAA games wouldn't probably touch it (with the exception of 2K perhaps wanting to make a downloadable NCAA tournament type game.)
- On last Thursday, I was able to see the Dark Knight Rises, and while I thought it was a decent film, I just didn't think it was as good as the first two movies of this newest Batman trilogy.
After seeing the movie, I went back to my old comic collection and read through the Knightfall series that introduced Bane. Reading through the storyline, this is probably why I wasn't as impressed with the movie, as I just liked what they did with Bane's character as well as how they showed Batman struggling with the stress of dealing with keeping Gotham safe. It just seemed to be a much better explanation of how Bane was able to best Batman than how it was handled in the film.
I have a bunch of spoiler type questions to ask people if they've seen the film, so if you'd like to have that conversation, just email me.
- Another film that I saw over my hiatus was 'In Time' with Justin Timberlake. I don't know how the film got such negative reviews, but I loved the concept of people needing to pay for everything in their lives by sacrificing their future. It wasn't a perfect film by any means, but it was definitely enjoyable.
- 2 weeks ago, the Brewers looked like they had a chance to turn things around with a 9 game stretch against their closest NL Central foes, but after being swept by the Reds this weekend, they went 4-5 in that stretch and are now 10 1/2 games out of the lead for the division. Their only real option right now is to trade anyone who isn't Gallardo, Braun, or Lucroy and start building for '13 and '14. Rumor has it that they offered Greinke $110 million+ over 5 years and he turned it down... which means he really didn't want to stay in Milwaukee all that badly, so after his start on Tuesday (if all goes well... hell even if it doesn't) I expect to see him dealt.
After last year when just about everything went right with the team, just about everything has gone wrong this year. The bullpen has been a disaster and they have never been able to overcome the loss of their starting SS, 1st baseman, and left handed starting pitcher.
There will be a ton of people talking about how the Cards were able to come back from a huge deficit late in the year, but that is not this Brewers team. They just don't have the tools to make that deep run and they don't have the players to trade at lower levels that they could use to acquire the players that they need now to make that run.
- In gaming.... I started to mess around with NCAA Football 13 and found that it deals with so damn many of the issues that we've seen for the past few years. The CPU play calling is still horrendous and it just appears that they either have no idea how to fix the issues, or they just don't care to even want to try. When you're seeing the CPU trying to call a 4 WR deep route from the 5 yard line repeatedly, it just becomes too damn frustrating.
I haven't delved into the franchise mode largely because... well... I'm having a hard time trying to muster up interest in trying it. I keep expecting that they are going to try and do things right, but after this many years, I can't actually believe that they will. I guess I"m becoming far too jaded to play their games. Maybe time will change that, but right now, I just can't get interested in it.
- That should be enough for now. Have a great week everyone.
- A bit of advice to Jerry Sandusky, if you're going to go on national television making a plea of innocence to Bob Costas... Try not to have an awkward 15 or 16 second pause when you're asked about whether or not you're sexually attracted to young boys.
I have to commend Costas on his interview skills though. An interview such as that one is an incredibly difficult one to handle. He asked tough questions and great follow ups.
- Don't believe that the Packers have played a more complete game than the one that they put together last night... and they still made plenty of offensive line mistakes and fumbled on a punt return. Still, you can't complain when you beat a division rival 45-7.
Plenty of tough opponents remain on the Packers schedule, but their offense is playing remarkably well and a 3 game division lead is always a good thing with 7 games to go.
- Speaking of football, I would like to thank the Vikings for stopping James Starks from scoring a late game meaningless touchdown that allowed me to win my fantasy game last night and go to 8-2 on the season. It's hard to believe my team has done this well, when I have only outscored my opponents by 50 for the season. Still, I'm not going to complain.
Only 3 more weeks before the playoffs, so make those last moves count.
Oh, and pay no attention to the playoff brackets that are created by the game. Currently it has teams from opposite divisions playing in the first round. I'll be re-adjusting it so that the top for teams from each division make the playoffs and are seeded from there.
- As far as gaming goes, Skyrim has been eating up quite a bit of my time as I navigate through the initial city that you travel to.
One of the problems that I had with Oblivion was the leveling system and having no idea what way was the best to grow your character. For example, I apparently went up 5 level during the first quest that I tackled with my character, but had no idea if it was a good idea to advance all the levels at once, or if there was a reason why I would want to wait and move up a level at a later time. I'd hate to think that I'm a few hours into the game and I've already made a mistake that would impact my character for the life of the game... but I'm going to stick with it either way.
I guess this is just one of those games where they really want you to buy the strategy guide, as you can tell it's just going to be a massive world that you're going to be taking on.
- Lastly, looking like no season for the NBA. It's just so hard to pick a side between billionaires and millionaires who can't split 3 billion dollars.
Whatever will we do without having to watch the pick-and-roll be run for 48 minutes?
- Well, I have to say that the Penn State board of trustees did the right thing last night by firing the university president and Paterno. How McQueary is still coaching this weekend doesn't make any sense to me.
Sadly it seems that this story is just not going to go away. Hopefully it will continue to make people aware of how universities and businesses will protect their own name before doing the right thing.
Maybe something like this can help stop that sort of behavior, probably not, but I can always hope.
- And because I'm incredibly weak, I pre-ordered Skyrim from Green Man Gaming earlier today. I'm happy to say that the pre-loading process is complete on my home PC and I'll be able to start digging into the game at 11:00 CST.
I think this is actually the first time that I was ever able to take advantage of that feature of Steam and I have to say that it's pretty damn cool. Something like that allows me to put the kids to bed and then just sit back and wait until I can play the game, rather than having to go to a midnight launch somewhere.
Just one of the nice things that the PC does that consoles still cannot.
- Don't forget to update your fantasy lineups if you have anyone playing in tonight's game. Gotta see if someone can knock of my 7-2 Madtown Bombers.
- Walmart has released their Black Friday ad online and there are a few interesting sports gaming deals in there.
For $15 each, you can pick up Dance Central 2, Kinect Sports: Season 2, or MX vs ATV Alive.
For $28 each, you can grab Madden 12, FIFA 12, Nascar 11, or Forza 4. (Also you can get Battlefield 3 or Batman: Arkham City for that same $28 price point.)
That's a good start to the Black Friday deals. I just hope you can order games on their website and avoid having to deal with the silly crowds.
- Lastly, I forgot to mention this a few weeks back, but I grabbed Warhammer: Space Marine from OnLive during their $1 sale and was pleasantly surprised as to how well the game played. I didn't notice much in the way of lag while mashing my way through the first groups of enemies and found that the graphics were surprisingly decent as well.
If they do offer another game sale where they're putting games forward for $1 again, I highly recommend you take a look at the service. For a $1, you can do much worse.
Over the past few days, I've debated how I wanted to comment on the events revolving around Jerry Sandusky and the Penn State football program.
When I heard the initial reports of the story and some of the details, I tried to steer myself away from the story and any of the horrific information that might have been included along with it.
You see, I have my own experiences with being the victim of sexual assault and know exactly the kinds of issues that it causes for a child who is subjected to it. So, when the story came out, I tried to distance myself from it, so as to prevent myself from having to deal with the emotions that instantly come to mind when I hear of horrific acts, such as the ones that Sandusky is charged with.
My anger, in regards to this, comes from so many different places and is directed at so many people. From the graduate assistant who walked in on one of the events and only told his boss about it, to Paterno who took what he heard from the graduate assistant and only passed it on to his boss, to the way that certain media outlets have handled the story. (Last night ESPN Radio ran a feature about how great Sandusky was as a defensive coordinator, as if the one thing that we needed last night was a feature detailing how terrific Jerry Sandusky was at implementing the Cover 2 was while he was, allegedly, raping young boys.)
The New York Times indicates that planning has already begun to remove Joe Paterno as the head coach of the Penn State football team, and that news could not have come fast enough. The fact that they waited until after Paterno had set the record for the most wins in college football history seems remarkably convenient, as far as timing goes.
I have no idea why the graduate student who witnessed the act did not attempt to stop the act from happening or at the very least contact the police. I have no idea why Paterno when told what the graduate student saw didn't contact the police. I have no idea why Paterno would have let Sandusky continue to use the Penn State facilities after hearing that something like that was happening in HIS locker room.
My belief is that none of them should be allowed to continue at their jobs, and based upon how they handled the events that they either witnessed or the fact that they did nothing to act to protect or help that child, I would think that most people would want to keep children away from them as they seem to have little to no concern for their well being when it would matter most.
Before Halloween, my daughter and I went to a costume store to look for a fairy costume for her to wear this year. While we were walking through the store she noticed some of the goblin faces, witch costumes, and other Halloween decorations. She turned to me and said, "Daddy, those don't scare me because I know that monsters aren't real."
I thought to myself, "Yes daughter, monsters really do exist.... they're just much worse than any of the things you could ever imagine."