Bush’s plan for the inner cities

As part of its plan to ruin everything good and decent, ESPN let George W. Bush into the booth during the Braves-Nationals game tonight, where he proceeded to inform us of the great opportunities playing professional baseball offers inner-city youth. Who says that he doesn’t care about black people? He just doesn’t care about black people who can’t turn the double play or hit a curveball.

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27 responses to “Bush’s plan for the inner cities

  1. That is so damned offensive to me. You might as well say the lottery offers great opportunities to inner-city families, or that the rap music industry does. I’m sure the odds of success are about the same.

    I have a friend who worked at an inner-city program for kids. At one point they filled out some kind of form listing their plans for adulthood, and almost every one of them, she said, wrote “Professional basketball player.” These weren’t little kids–they were young teens. Teens who didn’t play well enough to make even the school team. My friend thought their lack of a realistic outlook (and the lack of any adult guidance towards a more realistic outlook) was pretty darned sad. But here we have Bush blathering the same kind of crap on national TV.

  2. He looked absolutely lit to me.

  3. I was somewhat amused and appalled when I heard him say that.

  4. Mac,

    Apropos of … not this … your favorite Roy Moore wrote a letter to the P-R: http://www.al.com/opinion/press-register/index.ssf?/base/opinion/120695493967380.xml&coll=3

  5. I started and re-started a comment three different times because I’m trying to figure out how I feel about this.

    Encouraging inner-city youth to try to become sports stars as a way out of their crappy environment *is* rather appalling, but then I thought, “encouraging them to study hard is a joke because often their schools suck”.

    Then I wanted to criticize society’s glorification of music stars and sports heroes at the expense of the value in simply pursuing a career doing something you enjoy and which you’re good at. But then I realized that when an inner-city kid expresses a desire to be a rap star or pro athlete, he/she is really expressing their despair at society forgetting about them and their powerlessness.

    I guess I’m left pondering once again how it could be that an idiot like George W. Bush – who has nothing going for him but his family name, who was a complete failure in his studies – has the chutzpah to tell anyone how to succeed in life.

    Maybe it’s just utter cluelessness.

  6. As to the notion that booing the president is an indictment of one’s class or upbringing:

    This administration has done more to shroud itself in secrecy than any other. Bush and Cheney (especially Cheney) almost never appear in public in such a way as to invite accountability. Bush holds fewer press conferences than any previous president — Cheney, none at all. They speak only at think tanks, fundraising dinners, and other hand-picked audiences. Loyalty oaths, anybody?

    So you buy a ticket to a baseball game, and see that the president is throwing out the first pitch. You disagree vehemently with innumerable decisions that have been made in the last 7 years (you want a list, I’ll give you mine), and realize that this is the one opportunity you’re ever going to get to express yourself to the man most responsible. A good many of the people in attendance decided not to check their citizenship status at the turnstile. I’d have been one of them, had I been there. And I’ve got class, and I was raised just fine.

  7. Well said Sansho.

  8. I definitely would have booed him, and probably would have thrown in a few cries of “You suck, Bush!” in for good measure. On a bad day, I probably would have included “Go back to Texas, murderer!” I see no reason to respect the man, and there is no reason to respect the office when it’s held by a man who doesn’t respect the constitution that established it.

    I should add, however, that I have hated this man since the first moment I saw him in action in 1999. It’s very much a visceral thing. He’s the only man in American public life I ever instantly wanted to punch, and I haven’t been in a fight in since ninth grade. He certainly hasn’t done anything since to make me change my mind.

  9. I think you can see why I leave the “no politics” light on.

  10. Marc Schneider

    Mac,

    I’m very glad this site exists because I was having an awfully hard time holding my comments on Braves Journal.

    I agree with Sansho. Normally, I might agree with some of the commenters on Braves Journal about just shutting up, but this is not just an ordinary president (being the worst is quite a feat) or an ordinary time. People are angry; soldiers and civilians are dying in Iraq, the country’s reputation is in tatters. I think it’s quite American to let your feelings be known. And it’s naive to think that occasions like throwing out the first ball or having a championship team visit the White House aren’t political.

    But I don’t have a big issue with what he said about baseball being a way out. I don’t think he intended to say that it’s the only way out but in Bush’s inimitable way, he is completely unable to express an idea coherently. Team him up with Joe Morgan and you have set the English language back decades.

  11. well done sansho1……..a wise old man told me shortly after i returned from viet nam” if you dont like what your government is doing,you not only have the right to express yourself, you have a DUTY”

  12. Thanks for the kind words and for your service, barrycuda.

  13. Sounds to me as if he was saying, Well, blacks aren’t good for much of anything, but at least they do pretty well in sports.

  14. The worst part, of course, is that there aren’t as many urban opportunities to play baseball these days as there used to be. Baseball fields take up lots of space and require lots of maintenance; baseball equipment (even just balls and bats) costs lots of money; baseball games require lots of people; etc.

    Compare all of this to basketball: small courts that can just be slabs of concrete or asphalt; balls that don’t wear out; teams of manageable size; etc. (obviously, this has nothing to do with the respective merits of either sport, both of which I quite enjoy).

    Is it any wonder that no one has ever implemented a “midnight baseball” program to keep youths out of trouble?

  15. To be absolutely fair (oh, it hurts) Bush made his statements in the context of calling on Major League Baseball to fund inner-city development efforts — ballfields, Little League, etc. Which is a nice idea, but not something that offers opportunities to the masses.

  16. I think a more reasonable and agreeable thing for the pResident to have said, would be encouraging inner-city youth to play sports because it builds character, teaches how to work with others, etc. I would have had no problem with that kind of statement. As usual, Bush is completely lost when he has to go off his talking points.

  17. I should add, however, that I have hated this man since the first moment I saw him in action in 1999.

    Indeed, I’ve had a “No W” sticker on my car – bought from Zack Exley before he was Somebody – since 1998. I could see back then that he was a dangerous idiot and I was amazed that the GOP would run him as their nominee. The GOP seems to specialize in affirmative action for the mouth-breathers but W was exponentially beyond the stupidity of idiots like JD Hayworth.

    The fact that he actually got so many votes in 2000 and 2004 makes me despair for this country. (S)Elect a conservative, that’s one thing; (s)elect a guy who is so obviously clueless and isn’t barely holding a job at 7-11 only because he carries the family name is quite another. I don’t like to call the people at large ‘stupid’ because that’s not really true, I don’t believe that people in general are stupid, despite the fact that about a third to a half of this country really believes that an imaginary sky-being created the entire universe 6000 years ago over the course of six consecutive 24-hour periods.

    However the people sure do some stupid things sometimes.

  18. “…encouraging inner-city youth to play sports because it builds character, teaches how to work with others, etc.” Well, amen to that. And if the context was Bush calling on MLB to fund inner-city sports stuff, WHY in the world wouldn’t that be the kind of thing anybody would think to say? Maybe we’re making too much of it – but maybe this kind of thing really does represent a glimpse into his character.

    Renato, I don’t see how he can be as clueless as all that. I mean, he doesn’t lack intelligence. He’s lacking something else.

  19. My god, I love you people.
    Let’s just add this as the billionth reason we hate the man. If McCain wins, there are 2 options, we become the revolution or I’m moving to Canada!

  20. Isn’t this the same G W Bush whose mother said this of Katrina evacuees? Callous indeffirence may be inherited.
    “What I’m hearing which is sort of scary is they all want to stay in Texas. Everyone is so overwhelmed by the hospitality.

    “And so many of the people in the arena here, you know, were underprivileged anyway, so this–this (she chuckles slightly) is working very well for them.”

  21. I won’t even get started on Bush, the comments about ESPN are quite apropriate.

    Remember when the baseball season started in Cincinnati, the oldest baseball club?

    But since there aren’t any ratings to be had in Cincy, its off to Japan! Off to DC! Bud Selig for Commissioner!! Then somebody lets that blithering idiot in the building!!!

    Kee-rist, whata buncha maroons.

  22. Cincinnati isn’t the oldest baseball club. The Braves are, then the Cubs. The original Cincinnati Red Stockings shut down after a couple of years, and the Cincinnati Reds of the original NL folded after five seasons. The current Reds began operation in 1882 and are tied with the Pirates and Cardinals as the third-oldest teams.

    As a Braves fan, I feel very strongly about this.

  23. Well, then somebody’s been lyin to me!!

    But for a long time they always started in Cincy, by god!!!

  24. Pingback: appletree » Blog Archive » Bush has a plan to provide opportunity to minority children in the inner cities

  25. Encouraging inner city youth to play sports doesn’t have to come from pushing them towards false dreams of doing it as a career. MLB is more or less the governing body of baseball as a whole in America and it should be doing plenty to use it’s resources and game to teach young people leadership, responsibility and that there is more to life than what they might see on a daily basis.

    There is nothing wrong with this people, stop the spin and hype and do something positive.

  26. Randall, he explicitly spoke of major league baseball contracts and the relatively long careers of star players.

  27. we should all pay heed to the opinions of a noted scholar and expert on inner city troubles like W……………….think hes ever been there without a hurricane wiping the place out first? or is that where he picked up his fine nuances of our language?

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