Listen to our weekly show !!

Listen to our weekly show !!
CARDINAL COUPLE RADIO'S LATEST BROADCAST IS UP AND RUNNING IN THE ARCHIVED SOUNDCLOUD. . We are the leader in UofL women's sports from a fan's perspective! CLICK THE CRESCENT HILL MICROPHONE TO HEAR OUR LATEST BROADCAST !! (You can also find Crescent Hill Radio on the Tune In app.) AND PLEASE CONSIDER DONATING TO CARDINAL COUPLE AT THE PAYPAL LINK BELOW!

Donate to Cardinal Couple via PayPal

Sunday, September 25, 2016

More On Saturday's Games

Louisville Takes Care of Marshall; Wins 59-28


In what I would consider an ugly game, Louisville went on the road, took care of business, and got the hell out of Dodge. Yes, the Cards put up 59 points and Lamar Jackson put up his second 7 touchdown game of the season, but there are some things to address. For those counting at home, LJ8 has as many 7 touchdown games as Michael Vick, Robert Griffin III, Vince Young, Marcus Mariota, Tim Tebow, and Johnny Manziel had in 222 combined games (per Joe Giglio). Lamar Jackson has more total touchdowns than every FBS team except for Michigan, who has yet to play a ranked team or a road game. And he’s done it in 11 of 16 possible quarters. The young man is having a magical season and I’m happy to get the chance watch him in person and cheer for him.

The interesting thing about this season is that, with increased performance and recognition, comes increased expectation. We are allowed to nitpick at negative things when the team wins by 30 for the fourth time this season because there is a lot on the line. In a normal Louisville season, some of the things I’m about to harp on might be looked over. We fans might be content with where we sat and a close loss on the road at Clemson might be brushed off with the domination of Florida State still fresh in our minds. But not this year. I truly believe that this iteration of the Louisville Football squad has every tool and the talent to compete with, and beat, every other team in the country. 

That said, here are some of the things I saw that were off about last night’s game. Feel free to sound off in the comments if you disagree. First, the offensive line took a huge step back against Marshall. The announcers (who were terrible) said that this was the blueprint that other teams needed to look at to see how to get pressure on Lamar Jackson, but that’s not true. Marshall didn’t do anything special to try to put more pressure on Lamar, and if you don’t think that FSU was dialing up everything they could to get to him, you’re mistaken. Marshall got in Lamar’s face because of blown assignments and because the O-line was flat out getting beaten. Every replay of a failed run for Lamar showed a tackle or guard getting blown by or just whiffing on a block. The offensive line has played better than that this season and will need to against Clemson to prevent a slow start. Louisville is one of 6 teams in the country that has not trailed this season. I’m not sure how they would react to it, but I’d rather not find out. Fortunately, the Cards were resilient enough last night to turn things around in the second quarter.

The second thing that frustrated me was the amount of mental mistakes the team made. Louisville racked up 145 penalty yards, their most in a game since accruing 147 in 2000. Holds brought back offensive gains, defensive penalties extended drives, and personal fouls gave up free ground. Combined with 3 turnovers—including a muffed fair catch (come on, man)—that is the perfect recipe for a team to shoot itself in the foot enough to give up a game. I’ll also tack on a mental mistake for the coaching staff here. Once Lamar Jackson comes out of the game, unless there is a real chance for the opposing team to come back and win, he should stay out of it. Marshall was headhunting all night, but even more so after being incensed by coaches sending the first team back out. Fortunately, the Cards offense took care of business cleanly and got back off of the field. Sometimes it doesn’t hurt to play it safer.

Lastly, the whole team lacked the crispness we’ve become accustomed to seeing. Lamar missed throws he really shouldn’t have. Receivers ran routes that took them completely out of plays. The defense missed tackles and lost coverage in ways that a better quarterback (like Deshaun Watson or Greg Ward, Jr.) will absolutely take advantage of. The special teams had the aforementioned muffed punt, a missed field goal, an offsides on a kickoff, and allowed a big return. We’ve gotten used to seeing a team clicking on all cylinders. Last night we saw a group with all kinds of misfires. It is encouraging to still come away with a road win while having so much trouble, but I really hope that they can clean things up this week in practice with all focus on what might be the biggest game of the season.

I’ve been particularly negative today, but make no mistake that I’m still in awe of what this team has accomplished so far. We were a Bobby Petrino act of mercy away from scoring 60 for the fourth time this season. They will receive first place votes in tomorrow’s polls just like last week. They’ll be a part of College GameDay for the second time in three weeks. They have a real chance to do things never before done by this program. Today, and last night during the game, I was a picky analyst, but I’m still on the train and just along for the ride. There’s a big game coming up Saturday night. Let’s see what our Cards are made of. Beat Clemson.

<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>

Men’s Soccer Blows Out Virginia, 6-1


The Cardinal XI, who were left out of the preseason rankings, have gone about getting their national attention this season the hard way. Louisville has started the season with a 7-1-1 (3-0-0 ACC) record with the only draw coming on opening night against Butler and the only loss coming against the pesky Wildcats. The Cards have climbed to number 13 (depending on what soccer rankings you look at. Top Drawer has them all the way up to 6), and took care of number 16 Virginia last night in style, piling on 6 goals in a very one sided affair. It appears that Ken Lolla may have more up his sleeve than people previously thought. I, for one, am hoping that they can keep it rolling, and I’m excited to see what they can accomplish for the rest of the season.

Until next time, Go Cards.
-CH-

Another 30+ point win for Louisville Football (ho, hum...) -- SUNDAY CARDINAL COUPLE


Note:  BE sure to check out Case's article as well , which should be posted later today. He's out-of-town...seeing how many Madisons he can find in Madisonville...a new version of Pokeman Go? 


CARDS MAUL MARSHALL 59-28


Another Saturday night, another 30+ point win for Louisville Football. This time the victim was Marshall...who did manage to keep it interesting for the first 15 minutes. 

Lamar Jackson, who threw for five touchdowns and ran for two more, gave himself the grade of "F" for the performance during his post-game interview. We're not sure what he considers an "A"...but it's probably something that mortal man could not accomplish or comprehend and probably takes place in another dimension or time continuum. 

Slow start? Yeah, it was. The Cards were having trouble blocking and that resulted in Lamar having to do a Three Stooges routine early. After that, he became General George Patton and marched through Marshall like Paulie attacks a pizza buffet...

FIVE POINTS TO PONDER

1) ACTION JACKSON - Jackson threw for 417 yards. The Cards had 690 total yards of offense. Marshall had a total of 207 yards. He didn't reach 100 yards rushing...but as Petrino mentioned after the game:

"We wanted him to work on his passing." 

 He got some work in...so did running back Brandon Radcliff..who ran for over 100 yds.

2) WHY, BOBBY, WHY? - After a Cardinal fumble early in the fourth quarter, which led to a Marshall score...the Cards re-inserted the first string offense. At that point, the score was 52-21 Louisville. Why risk an injury to your Heisman candidate and your best running back? Sure, Marshall scored twice in less than a minute...but...(OK, I'll stop here. I make no claims of having even 1/100th of Bobby's knowledge of the game.) 

3) CAN HE KICK, TOO? - Maybe the Cards should try Lamar on field goal attempts also. The Cards place-kicker Blanton Creque missed a "gimme" early on and the battle of mediocrity continues between Creque, and Evan O'Hara. Just sayin'...I hope kicking doesn't come back to haunt the Cards down the road. 



4) WHAT'S UP WITH THAT, MARSHALL? Beer sales are restricted to certain sections of the stadium. Far away from the visitors sections. As one attendee told me...

"We thought of bum-rushing the CSC guards that were keeping us from getting in there. We re-thought it, though...and figured a night in the Huntington jail might not be much fun." 

Join the 21st. century Marshall...




5) " THERE'S A FLAG ON THE PLAY" The Cards had more penalties than the most penalized team in Division I football last night. 12 whistles for 143 yards is too many. A repeat of that at Clemson will result in a Cardinal loss. 

***************************************************************

GOOD WISHES


PAULIE IS ON THE BENCH TODAY. 
Both women's Soccer and Volleyball play today at 1 p.m. The Kickin' Cards are at Lynn hosting Boston College. The wide-netters are at Florida State. Both should be available on the ACC Network Extra if you can't go. Field Hockey is in Boone, NC facing App. State. 

I'll be watching on-line. The knee is preventing me to do steps or drive well...and I missed the charter to Tallahassee (just kidding) so here's hoping we keep the win streak this weekend going. #13 men's Soccer routed Virginia 6-1 last night. 

I hope the guys stashed a couple of goals somewhere in Lynn for the gals today. 

***************************************************************

RADIO? WHY CERTAINLY! 


If you missed yesterday's broadcast of THE CARDINAL COUPLE RADIO HOUR yesterday...no need to blame Bobby, Lamar or Brent Musberger. (Musberger called the UK vs. South Carolina game last night on the SEC Network. Yes, he's still out there, folks). Worldwide and I had a lively discussion about Field Hockey, Volleyball, Soccer, Football and the station dog...Punkin'. And, some revealing audio as well, about how people really feel about stuff. 

The rebroadcast of Saturday's show can be found at the following coordinates: 

LINK: https://soundcloud.com/chradio/cardinal-couple-20160924

paulie
xxxxx


Saturday, September 24, 2016

Field Hockey shakes Wake 2-0...Volleyball falls to Irish...Radio today! -- SATURDAY CARDINAL COUPLE



#7 FIELD HOCKEY SHUTS OUT WFU


Signing "a whole lotta" autographs 
Getting a first half score from Lotta Kahlert and an insurance goal from Lizzie Gittens off a penalty corner...Louisville Field Hockey improved to 8-1 yesterday with an ACC win over the Demon Deaconesses. 

Coach Sowry was pleased: 

"This was easily our best performance of the year. Our coaching staff is so proud of the team with the execution of the game plan and the intensity at which we played." 

The squads battled through 30 scoreless minutes to begin the game before Kahlert knifed through the WFU defense and fired one into the top of the cage to put the Cards up. Louisville dominated action in the first 35 minutes...holding a 10-0 shot advantage. 

The second half saw Wake tighten up a bit more on defense but the Cards took advantage of a penalty corner with about eight minutes left to play. The combination of Erin McCrudden, Marigrace Ragsdale and Gittens on penalty corners has been quite productive for the Cards this year...Gittens tallied her fourth score of the season for the insurance goal. 

It is a bit of revenge for last year...when Wake Forest came to Trager and delivered a 2-1 loss to the Flock. 

Sowry will have to go to the monitor to find teaching points: 

"I usually can find things that we need to work on after a game and tonight I'll have to watch video to find those pieces to improve. Our leadership came to play and they had a very impressive supporting cast for 70 minutes".

Louisville heads to Boone, NC next for a noon start against Appalachian State. 


***********************************************************************************************

VOLLEYBALL FALLS IN 3 TO UND


Louisville Volleyball suffered from a .112 attack average last night in South Bend...falling 25-15, 25-20, 25-14 to the Irish. 

The Cards (5-6) did finally get Kali Eakin, Janelle Jenkins and Jasmine Bennett all in the line-up together for what seems like the first time in months...but nine serving errors and a .276 hitting percentage by Notre Dame proved to be too much to overcome. 

Anne Kordes tried quite a few combinations looking for a spark...playing 13 players in the three sets...but the Cards failed to win their opener in ACC play. Louisville swept the Irish last year at the KFC YUM! Center.

The road doesn't get any easier for the wide-netters...they head to Florida State Sunday.

I'm sure we'll have to drag commentary out of Worldwide today about last night's stumble in South Bend...he seems to be less verbose after losses. 


*********************************************************************************************

RADIO TODAY!


Join us for THE CARDINAL COUPLE RADIO HOUR today at 11 a.m. on WCHQ 100.9 and on-line at Crescent Hill Radio. We'll discuss a variety of topics....including Volleyball, Field Hockey, Women's Soccer, Women's Basketball and even a little football. We'll have audio from Justine Sowry, Pam Bustin, and a couple of fanatical Louisville football fans. We would do the show while jogging down Frankfort Avenue...but my knee hurts, it's too hot and the microphone cords won't stretch that far. 

If you missed the live broadcast..catch the replay at the link below! 

LINK:https://soundcloud.com/chradio/cardinal-couple-20160924


paulie
xxxxx 

Friday, September 23, 2016

WSOC battles #7 Duke to a scoreless tie...Volleyball, Field Hockey on road tonight -- FRIDAY CARDINAL COUPLE


( Written while battling a balky laptop that does not want to save or allow me to preview posts. I think I better call...GHOSTBUSTERS! ) 


CARDS, BLUE DEVILS GO 110 WITH NO SCORE


Sammy Hagar claimed he couldn't drive 55. John Fogarty and Creedence Clearwater Revival insisted 99 1/2 wouldn't do. Nigel Tufnel, of Spinal Tap, felt the need to go to 11 and Chicago wasn't sure if it was 25 or 26 to 4. Three Dog Night insisted 1 is the loneliest number that you'll ever know.  Alice Cooper was 18...and didn't know what he wanted. 

OK...enough of the musical number and artist ennui...

Last night Louisville women's soccer traveled to Durham, NC to face #7 Duke and after 110 minutes of play, the squads were right where they started on the scoreboard. 0-0, nothing to nothing...zip and zilch. 

That isn't the whole story of the two-overtime thriller...both squads had near misses with shots on goal...especially Duke...and Cardinal goalkeeper Taylor Bucklin earned her scholarship monies with two "did-you-see-that?" saves (two of her season-high seven). 

Louisville (6-2-2, 1-0-1) came out defensive-mined. It wasn't quite the "build-a-wall in-front-of-the-goal" strategy that Ball State used on the Cards two weeks ago...but the majority of the first-half action took place on the Cardinals part of the field...Duke had five of their seven shots on goal in that first 45 minutes (compared to zero, zip, zilch for the Cards) but none of them entered the net.

Here's a fun stat (avert your eyes, Justine Sowry)...these two squads have now played a total of 440 minutes and neither team has scored a goal. 

It is a good, if rather boring, philosophy to employ when you are on the road against a quality opponent. Led by Inger Katherine Bjerke...who the Duke announcer on ACC Network Extra referred to as "Beercheck" a couple of times...the Cards routinely had 7,8 or 9 players back in the defensive role of making sure that nothing got past the posts. 


It looked like the Blue Devils would break the scoreless match in the 71st. minute. Taylor Racioppi (whose name the announcers got right) slipped the Cardinal defense and found herself right in front of Bucklin with the ball. A shot was fired, Bucklin managed to get a knee in front of it and the ball bounced to the left side of net...inches short of going in. I almost had to go do a beer-check after that one. Bjerke was there also...but I'm not sure if she realized what was going on. 

LINK: SHOT DENIED !

The Blue Devils out-shot Louisville 31-9...but after the five first half shots on goal...they only managed two more the rest of the way. Louisville did get their offense a little more employed as the contest went on and attempted five shots on goal. The Cards were firing away with about the same frequency as the Blue Devils in the last seven minutes of regulation but the scoreboard (and the Duke defense) refused to move. 

Our columnist Case Hoskins has lamented about the whole two overtime process. And, it was clear that both of these teams were gassed in the second overtime...each team only getting one shot-on-goal opportunity in the 10 minutes. I'd like to see a strategy shift in college soccer to eliminate ties. Sure, go ahead and play your first ten minute overtime if you wish...but go to a one-on-one shootout against the goalie after that if it is still tied. First one to score wins the game. Or go to "first-one-to-3". Have the coaches meet at mid-field and play rock, paper, scissors. Anything. Just get rid of these extra 10 minutes.

Ties on the road against top ten foes are better than losing. They're not as rewarding as wins. Someone once said "a tie is like kissing your sister". I don't have a sister, so I can't fully understand or have any actual experience the concept...although I've kissed a few "sisters" in my days. If you've been kissing your sister...I probably don't want to hear about it. 


Louisville comes home to face Boston College Sunday afternoon at the Lynn. Game time is 1 p.m. Dress is casual, wear something Cardinal and...

No ties, please...

My buddy Doug Bruno...he, of DePaul WBB, likes ties. Especially the Jerry Garcia style. I used to have to wear them years ago in the work-a-day world. These days, it's usually a funeral, wedding or Easter Sunday that gets one around my neck. Most useless piece of clothing ever invented...

I wonder if Doug could use a few dozen ties that span five decades? Boxed up and ready to ship...



******************************************************

VOLLEYBALL, FIELD HOCKEY TONIGHT

7 p.m. is the start time for both Louisville Field Hockey and Volleyball tonight...with both teams on the road. 


Anne Kordes' Wide-Netters are taking on Notre Dame. The Irish are an impressive 9-3 as their rebuilding process appears to be moving swimmingly along. This is the first of two challenges for the 5-5 Cards...they head to Florida State (7-2) Sunday. WatchESPN will carry the match.

Freshman Melanie McHenry leads the Cards with 126 kills this season. No other Cardinal has reached the 100 mark yet.  

Louisville Field Hockey takes a swing thru Carolina this weekend...stopping first in Winston-Salem to face Wake Forest. This is a top 15 matchup...the Cards #7 and WFU #14. Louisville is also #11 in the RPI. UofL (7-1) heads to Boone, NC for a matchup with App. State Sunday. The Cards are first in ACC home Field Hockey attendance. Having seen how the total attendance is determined...the numbers are a bit suspect...but hopefully the Cards will draw well for the WFU match. Watching Louisville v Duke WSOC last night...the bleachers maybe had 15 people in them total. The TV view shows only one side of the field, of course...but it wasn't exactly a packed Lynn Stadium. 

ACC play. Coming at ya at full speed this days. Love it! 

paulie
xxxxx







Thursday, September 22, 2016

On the first day of Fall...let's talk Fall Sports! -- Thursday Cardinal Couple



LEAVES ARE FALLING...AND SO ARE THE OPPONENTS

With fall officially here now...according to the calendar...it seems like a good time to discuss the Fall Sports we've been following here at CARDINAL COUPLE. For brevity purposes, we'll look at Field Hockey, women's Soccer, Volleyball and Football...since those are the four we've been paying the most attention to. This is not to slight what men's soccer, women's golf, cross country or rowing have been up to. They've been active and vibrant. 

First off, it doesn't seem like fall here in Louisville. 92 degrees yesterday, a promise of the same today and Friday and air quality alerts...plus ragweed...have a lot of people miserable here in the Ohio Valley. The mornings have been cool the last couple of days and that's special. With fall comes the inevitable tasks of leaf mulching...my enormous tulip poplar is already starting to drop them...shaping and trimming the hedges in the front yard and making the transition from shorts and t-shirts to long pants and sweatshirts. The seasons change here in Louisville...these hot, fall afternoons will be missed when it's -10 degrees outside and the roads are ice skating rinks...

FIELD HOCKEY

Justine Sowry and the Flock have but one blip on the radar...a loss to Duke at Trager last Friday. At 7-1 (0-1) and ranked at #7 in the nation...Professor Paulie gives them a grade of  A- so far for the fall. The Duke game was winnable...losing 2-1 to the #2 team in the nation is no disgrace and it seemed the Cards were getting opportunities to create and score but couldn't finish the process against the Blue Devils. 

The squad has used a combination of returnees and new players to acheive these heights. We'll give shoutouts to them. 

( Update 11:15 a.m.) The rest of this post was "lost in the cyberspace somewhere...and I cannot retrieve it and didn't save it.) 

to sum it up...we gave Soccer a "B", Volleyball a "C" and Football an A+

Sometimes, the format has its glitches. 

paulie
xxxxx

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Welcome to Cardinal Arena -- Jessica Laemmle...Just For Fun...caption the picture -- Wednesday CARDINAL COUPLE


( This is the fifth in a series of articles about the new players on the University of Louisville women's basketball team. Since we are doing these in alphabetical order...Jessica Laemmle is up next.) 


WALK ON, WORK IN, WANT IT...


There are statistics out there that indicate a little less than 2% of girls who play high school hoops move on to play at the Division I level. Take those odds and then figure in the probability of ending up on a top five preseason team as a freshman. Then factor in that it is in your hometown. And, you're a walk-on.. Jessica Laemmle completes the superfecta. There was never any doubt in her mind, though. She explains

" There was no doubt in my mind that, if I was walking on anywhere, I would walk on at UofL....I'm here and Coach Walz is giving me the opportunity and I'm just going to excel at it." 

It wasn't like this was the only opportunity Jessica would ever have to play NCAA women's college hoops. There was interest from several NAIA and NCAA D II programs. She saw it this way: 

"I'd rather be a small fish in a big pond than a big fish in a small pond. My family has been long-time season ticket holders and the Cards swim in the biggest of women's basketball ponds". 

It's not like the Cards are bringing in a mascot or anything. Jessica was Louisville Catholic Sports Player of the Year. She shoots 80% from the free throw line. She's been described as a "tenacious defender" and " a player that leaves it all on the floor". Her coach at Mercy Academy...Keith Baisch...who was an assistant coach at Louisville from 1998-2001...was supportive when she was initially considering going for the preferred walk-on role. 

" I didn't see it as a negative. It's just a way of saying that it'll take a little more time to prove herself...and I think Jess can handle that." 

A team is made up of all types of personalities, skill sets and roles. Laemmle contacted Walz...Walz made it clear that no walk-on is ever guaranteed an eventual scholarship and it is an uphill battle. Sometimes, people discount walk-ons...despite the fact that the Cards have has some pretty good ones in Shelby Harper and Dakota Weatherford over the years. That doesn't bother Laemmle. 

"When someone tells me I can't do something, I try to turn around and do it. That is my role right now...being a walk on...so I can't dismiss it. I'll have to earn the respect." 


At 5'2"...she qualifies for CARDINAL COUPLE'S "Attack Yorkie" squad (players 5'5" or shorter). We see her now as a "30-30" player (getting in the game when the Cards are up by 30 or with 30 seconds left in the game) but don't discount her moving up the ladder. Intensity and defense get Walz's attention. She has both of those skills. 

We're pretty sure she'll fast become a fan favorite...because she's local, because she's fun to watch on the court and because of her hustle and dedication. 

She'll also burn you right off the bat. I had the opportunity to see her play last year against J'Town. She made an impact just five seconds into the game...having the opening tip directed to her...driving down the court and sinking a mid-range jumper. We hope she has many opportunities to dribble, shoot and score with the Cards. 





FIVE FUN FACTS ABOUT JESSICA

1) Doctor, doctor? Doing a Google search, I discovered there is a veterinarian in San Diego, CA named Jessica Laemmle. Leading a dual existence?  

2) Floor Exercise...Jessica was a gymnast until the 10th. grade. Maybe she'll do a triple somersault and stick the landing after a layup! (We give her 10's already...) 

3) No relation...some relation... During my days at UofL, I had a great Political Science professor named Phil Laemmle. Although not related to Phil, she is Louisville sports journalist Jody Demling's niece...

4) Hoops in the family. Her dad, Rick Laemmle, was a 6th. grade basketball coach at Mercy Academy in 2016. We're pretty sure she's a better free throw shooter than him, though. 

5) Winner, winner...chicken dinner! Jessica lists chicken as one of her favorite foods. So do 2017 verbal Lindsey Duvall, Cortnee Walton, Myisha Hines-Allen and Sam Fuehring. Maybe CARDINAL COUPLE should open a Bojangles restaurant near campus...( I miss the Bojangles chicken in the area. You can still find them to the south of us.) 


JUST FOR FUN...CAPTION THIS PICTURE

Lamar Jackson, UofL QB...has made the cover of Sports Illustrated, It's an interesting photo. Just for fun, feel free to caption the photo and put it in the comments section. 

I put my "caption" in the photo below: 

WHAT STARTS WITH AN "E" and ENDS WITH AN "E"?
WHAT IS "ENDZONE, ALEX?"
CORRECT.


paulie
xxxxx

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

On knees and raising fists -- TUESDAY CARDINAL COUPLE


With no Cardinal women's sports taking place until Thursday this week...Paulie takes a look at a subject that has been getting quite a bit of attention lately. Kneeling and raising fists during the National Anthem.



Protest. It's an inalienable right afforded to the citizens of the USA. America was settled about 500 years ago by Europeans and English who were protesting the unfair ways and means they were being forced to live in their countries. Peaceful protest, not taking to the streets and looting and rioting. There is a big difference there. Of course, there were Native Americans already here. And, dinosaurs way before that. Thus concludes today's history lesson. Go in peace.  

Does protest have a place in athletics, though? Does it need to be displayed during the National Anthem? There are injustices in our nation, our way of life. Racial inequalities. Police brutality. We see them every day. They are deplorable, unacceptable and inexcusable. Is a game, a sporting event the acceptable venue to bring attention to them? 

Do protests need to be displayed during an athletic event? Certainly it is a high-profile visibility. There is a modicum of decency that suggest one keep their eyes on the flag during the playing of our national anthem. But, more and more...people are looking around to see if anyone is kneeling or raising a fist. That I don't like. It is my right to have that opinion. I choose to look at our flag and remember those who have defended it. 

The singing or playing of the national anthem....as well as the reciting of the pledge of allegiance is meant to show respect to the country we live in. It is, though, not mandatory...like the hand-raising..."Sieg Heil" of Nazi Germany. Listen to the P.A. announcers before the singing or playing of the national anthem.


"PLEASE rise, remove your hats and join us in the signing of our national anthem." It is a request, not a mandate. 

It is our choice, like the many choices we have in this great land. I choose to rise, sing and acknowledge those who served, died and protect us. To show respect for a place where I can write an article like this without fear of censorship, retaliation or recriminations. 

Some don't. Although I disagree with their choice to refrain or show another action...it is their choice. We may choose to disagree about the procedure. We both have that right. Think of those in this world, just for a moment...that don't have choices. Who are more worried about whether they will receive food on a daily basis than a song or pledge.



Like many of you reading this, I am from a family where some gave all to assure the freedoms I have today. My late father served a total of 30 years in the Navy. My uncle died on the battleship Arizona in Pearl Harbor. My late father-in-law marched with Patton through France and Germany. One of my best friends was killed in Vietnam. I am well-familiar with the naval base in Key West. 

I have also been the subject of police brutality. I have been witness to racial profiling and discrimination. I didn't like it one bit. I have howled in outrage when I've heard of another senseless shooting. 

I vividly remember the 1968 Olympics when track gold medalist Tommie Smith and bronze medalist John Carlos donned black gloves and raised their fists in support of Black Power. Hey, the world was a pretty big mess in '68. Some would question if it's gotten any better. 


If this article has made you think...then it has served it's purpose. As for me, you'll still find me singing the national anthem at sporting events. You'll see me reciting the Pledge of Allegiance. I'd be happy if you join me...I'll estimate that way over 99% of the people reading this will. 

I'll also respect the rights of others who choose not to do so. Just as they respect my right to express myself. 

And...finally...I'll hope for a day....someday soon, hopefully...when there is no injustice, discrimination or brutality in the land I love. Sometimes, it seems so far away. 

paulie
xxxxx