So many killings happen in this country, every day, that it all starts to blend together.
You turn on the TV, and there’s five murders in Chicago, a homicide in the Bronx, three people killed in Florida, yada yada yada. It all blends in like background noise, rarely paid much attention to, kind of the way the toll of our American soldiers’ deaths during long wars gets sadly ignored (Vietnam, the Iraq war from 2003-2011, it happens all the time.)
So it takes a lot to snap us out of our numbness about death. Tuesday it took me reading about this crime you may have heard about, a 23-year-old Australian going to college in Oklahoma named Christopher Lane.
Lane (photo above) is a baseball player at East Central University in Duncan, Okla., and he was murdered last Friday by three teenagers while Lane was out jogging.
They decided to kill him because, as one of the teens arrested told police, “we were bored and didn’t have anything to do, so we decided to kill somebody.”
Of all the reasons for committing murder that I’ve ever heard, that might be the most maddening.
Where has our society gone wrong that three children growing up in America decide that it’s OK to go kill an innocent stranger because they were bored?
Where were the parents, or any other adults in these boys’ formative years, that so abdicated their responsibility to teach right from wrong?
Just sickening. Absolutely sickening that we as a nation can produce such animals as these three boys, who had nothing better to do last Friday so decided to end a person’s life.
When does it end?
**Time for a palatte-cleanser. Next up today, I thought this was one of the best newspaper essays I’ve read in a long time. Sarah Lyall was the New York Times’ London correspondent for the past 18 years, and while across the pond she got to learn just what it is that Brits think of Americans, and how different our two countries really are.
It was fascinating to see how her biases about each country changed, and I thought she had a trenchant take, especially on how England sees our political scene.
It’s definitely worth a read.
**Finally, I don’t mean to pick on the Nashville Predators hockey team alone, because they’re nowhere near the only franchise to do something like this.
But it’s a terrible move when anyone does it, and I just happened to get annoyed by them today.
Here’s the deal: Pro sports teams in non-traditional markets, like Nashville, often face the problem of road team fans with a rich tradition and a national fan-base coming to their arena and outnumbering, and out-cheering their home fans.
The Yankees’ opponents have this problem, as do the foes of the L.A. Lakers, Boston Celtics, Dallas Cowboys, and other storied franchises.
So instead of building up your own team’s fan base and putting a great product on the field to encourage your own fans to come out en masse, teams pull stunts like this. The Predators have announced that for the upcoming hockey season, any fans that want to buy tickets for the home game against the Chicago Blackhawks must ALSO buy tickets to another game.
This will theoretically limit the number of ‘Hawks fans who will fill up the Predators’ arena when Chicago plays Nashville.
This is stupid. Asinine. Idiotic.
First, you are going out of your way to prevent people from other cities from visiting your town, spending money on hotels, restaurants, etc., money that is sorely needed in any town.
Second, from a sporting perspective, it’s like surrendering. You’re saying “we can’t sell out our own building, so instead of allowing people who really want to go to the games attend, we’ll just freeze them out and have lots of empty seats.”
If I were a Predator fan, I would hate this. It makes zero sense. You want more Predators fans in your building? Then win. And create the desire in new fans to come to games.