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Monday, October 06, 2003

My Three-Year-Old Pegs It: Maybe Conservatives Should Part Company with the NFL

I've been a pro football fan for 35 years. Not just a slight one. The Immaculate Reception was one of the highlights of my entire life.

Being a fan, I bought my kids an NFL book called "N-F-L 1-2-3." Ostensibly, it teaches little kids to count to ten. In fact, it makes little kids cry.

My daughter Katie cried tonight at bedtime because this NFL preschool board book on counting to ten leaves out the number five. That's right. The NFL creates an entire book dedicated to nothing other than teaching kids to count to ten and the number five is missing.

Proofreaders they aren't.

Being a little kid, Katie could not understand that the NFL made a mistake. I tried to explain it every way I could think of, but Katie couldn't grasp the concept of a publisher's error. She was convinced that pages four and six must be stuck together. I explained and explained. She didn't get it. "Stuck!" she still cried.

So, finally, I took out a kitchen knife and carefully split one of the cardboard pages into two. That's hard to do. I tore holes in it a couple of times and had to tape it up. When I was finished peeling the page I hand-wrote "5" on the new, split cardboard, page.

The new page five, unlike all the other pages, didn't have any glossy pictures of football players. It just had the single numeral "5" on a torn-up page. But Katie nonetheless was satisfied. The number is what she wanted. She didn't need any football hype.

It got me to thinking about the Rush Limbaugh controversy. How much do any of us need that football hype? Especially we conservatives, who apparently aren't wanted?

Probably more than most people, I've been reading editorial comments about what Limbaugh said, and in doing so I've seen A LOT of anti-conservative vitriol from print media sports columnists, TV sports commentators, pro-football players and, just this evening, some really stupid stuff from the owner of the Philadelphia Eagles. What I have not seen is anyone from the NFL or anyone from an institution that makes money from its association with the NFL saying that the millions of conservatives being attacked right now are valued customers.

Maybe we're not. Maybe they don't want us around.

Prove me wrong.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:17 AM

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