Don’t you sometimes listen to the news and shake your head in frustration?
I’ve grown a thick skin as a result of the last two presidential elections. Most news stories now just roll off my back, or barely make a dent in my grey matter. It’s either because I’ve no interest in the topic of discussion, like the recent Miley Cyrus uproar, or it’s because the news pundits seem to sensationalize every tidbit of information, relevant or not.
However there are some stories which cause me to cluck my tongue and shake my head.
Yesterday, for example, CNN kept advertising a film it aired last night…”Blackfish.” It documented the killing, a year or so ago, of a female Sea World trainer by an orca, also known as a killer whale.
A predator in the wild, it makes total sense that at any time the orca could revert back to what it does instinctively…kill. While humans like to think we can anticipate every situation, especially after investing heavily into a project, we can’t possibly know with absolute certainty that a killer whale will never behave contrary to our expectations.
Rather than admit to failure, humans resort to positive spin…”It’s rare that orcas in captivity kill humans.” Evidently once is not enough to realize that we should let these magnificent creatures live out their lives with their own kind. They are not goldfish in a bowl.
Then there was the eye-popping news about a German bishop who got a smack down from Pope Francis. “Why was that?” you might ask.
It seems the cleric’s customized, new home cost tens of millions of dollar. Meanwhile, His Holiness has opted for simpler living in one of the Vatican’s guest quarters, rather than the grander papal apartment.
Why the “bishop of bling” felt he needed grandiose digs built with the generous donations of his parishioners is mind-boggling. As a Catholic, it made me want to slap the man upside the head and say “Duh??? What were you thinking?”
Why do we insist on having everything we might want…just because we can?
Finally, former NFL quarterback Brett Favre claims he is suffering memory loss.
“I think after 20 years God only knows the toll,” said Favre, who was sacked 525 times, more than any other NFL quarterback. “This was a little shocking to me, that I couldn’t remember my daughter playing youth soccer.”
Recent research has shown
Of the 34 former NFL players who have died and donated their brains to research, the percentage of them who have pathologically confirmed chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a degenerative brain disease, is over 90 percent, according to a 2009 University of Michigan report.
Evidently the NFL has taken the matter seriously enough to pay $765 million to players and their families who filed suit claiming the athletes suffered head injuries while playing football.
I don’t even need the experts weighing in to acknowledge that if a guy gets knocked to the ground by 300 pound gorillas, his helmet isn’t going to protect his brain from being tossed around like jello inside his craggy skull. Duh???
“There is still a pervasive belief that only a concussion serious enough to knock the athlete out will do damage, but that’s not the case,” Harvard neurologist, Dr. Marie Pasinski. “Any blow to the head that leaves a person slightly dazed or not quite right may cause harm to the brain.”
Favre has wisely chosen not to seriously entertain the Rams’ invitation for him to quarterback their team going forward. ‘ “I want to live a long time, I want to live healthy, as close to normal life as I can,” said Favre.’
Why do we continue to sacrifice our bodies, minds, and souls to money and fame? And if we do, why are we shocked when our lives take a turn for the worse?
I sometimes wonder about human behavior and what makes us do what we do, when it seems we should know better. Perhaps it’s in our nature to rationalize whatever path we choose. Some decisions are pretty straightforward; others can lead us on a merry chase. More times than not we end up facing the same dead end. We probably know in our gut what the likely outcome will be. Being human however, we prefer to play the odds. We’re risk takers…
…what have we got to lose?…a lot, it would seem…
- Pope Francis Suspends Bishop of Bling (guardianlv.com)
- Pope Francis: Greed is an instrument of idolatry (rawstory.com)
- Rams call Brett Favre, but he’s not returning (profootballtalk.nbcsports.com)
- Brett Favre Reportedly Rejects Rams’ Offer to Return After Sam Bradford’s Injury (bleacherreport.com)
- Should I take my child to SeaWorld? (cnn.com)
- Blackfish SeaWorld Film Attacks Theme Park for Abusing Orcas (americanlivewire.com)
- Filmmaker: Why I made ‘Blackfish’ (cnn.com)