Personal Fouls

Chances are that if you turn on your television tonight, you’ll be exposed to plenty of fumbles and personal fouls.

The Atlanta Falcons (my favorite team) are in New Orleans to play the Saints in a game guaranteed to have plenty of intensity.

An American football on field

I’m willing to go out on a limb and say that the game will be pretty tame compared with the first Presidential Debate.

In fact, it’s an even safer bet than saying that my fantasy football team is doomed to failure this week.  If only I had known that Delanie Walker would be out for the Tennessee Titans!

While I typically avoid writing political posts like most NFL teams avoid running the triple option, I believe this issue goes beyond politics.

It’s bad enough to endure an embarrassing debate between two of the least popular candidates ever to ever find themselves on the presidential ballot.  Who is really surprised that only 2 percentage points separate the two candidates?

I’m not able to pinpoint exactly when it happened, but it’s almost as if we have the two candidates we deserve.

After all, the fumbles and personal fouls will persist long after the camera lights go dim at Hofstra University.

Many of us will pick up right where the candidates left off quicker than you can say “fact check.”

There was a time when we were able to disagree with our friends – agreeing to disagree.

In fact, many of my better friends have had very different opinions than my own.  However, we’ve still found ways to respect each other and listen to the other’s viewpoints.

Sometimes friends have changed my mind a little, while at other times I thought they were totally full of BS.

Yet we’ve stayed friends.

Somehow the overall climate seems to have changed gradually over the years, almost without notice.

Maybe it’s because it can be so easy to make comments online without having to look someone in the eye.

Moreover, I think we were almost doomed to the lowest common denominator with the creation of so many of the clever and sometimes outright hateful memes we’ve all come across.  Just click the share button without thinking or offering any sort of commentary, and wait for the comments to roll in.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m a big fan of Facebook, Twitter, and of course blogging.

Social media platforms are only communication tools.  We’re the ones who ultimately decide what we communicate and the tone we use.

Some of my friends have mentioned that it’s no longer fun to even get on Facebook anymore because of some of the postings they come across.

Some friends have lost friends over the political crap and crass remarks.

So far, I’ve been lucky that my “friends” are actually friends.  I don’t believe I’ve lost any of them yet – at least I hope not.

Have you ever noticed how “simple” the viewpoints seem to be, if we look at the world strictly in black and white?

Most of the urgent issues we find ourselves facing today are complicated – sprawled across the grey spectrum.

Yet we seem to find ways to oversimplify the complicated and complicate the simple, opting to toss out the first comment or meme that comes to mind.

We owe it to ourselves, and those we care about, to be better than the candidates we’ll see stumbling, fumbling and dishing out personal fouls tonight.

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