By Ralph E. Moore Jr.
For the love of football
The Baltimore Ravens experienced lots of injuries in Sunday’s game against the Houston Texans. Tight end Mark Andrews, cornerback Marlon Humprey, offensive tackle Ronnie Stanley and wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. were all injured.
The game status of the hurt athletes ranged from perhaps suitable to play to questionable and out. Four injuries in one game seems like a lot of players being carted or escorted off the field. What’s going on? Aaron Rodgers, in his very first game with the New York Jets and after only four snaps, injured his left Achilles tendon when he was sacked by Leonard Floyd. He fell hard and weirdly on his left leg and may be out for all or part of the season. Strange. Incidentally, Rodgers was not the only torn Achilles, running back J.K. Dobbins is definitely out for the season after being injured within five minutes of the third quarter of the Ravens’ season opener.
NFL Football can be incredibly violent, brutal and dangerous. Is that why many fans love it so much? Is it for smash mouth play and if so, what does that say? The human body is not built for physical abuse (no matter how much one is paid to take it). And one cannot put a price tag on permanent injuries anyway. Would football be less popular with less brutality? Is a good run, a remarkable catch, a surprise interception, an amazingly accurate quarterback, good defense or tight scores to the end enough? If not– why not? Why is seeing violence so much a part of professional football for many? Just asking.
The massive earthquake and the omnipresent wildfires
And speaking of psyches…hearing the recent news of 2,400 deaths in the first earthquake in Morocco in northern Africa after 60 years can blow your mind. They are still searching for the dead over there. It is so sad.
One must wonder what the cumulative effect is of simply hearing about so many natural disasters on the evening news: wildfires in Maui, Hawaii, wildfires in Canada (remember our wearing masks earlier in the summer?), wildfires on the West Coast of the United States. Wildfires are caused by the intense heat we’re having, drought, windiness, and the conditions of the grounds themselves. Some days it seems as if wildfires are increasing in number and locations. Do the very hot temperatures, the many hurricanes and tornadoes each season, also increasing in number and intensity, affect our mental health? Are we more worried than we’re willing to admit– or more than we even realize? And what if collectively as Americans or citizens of the world we are not worried enough about climate change? Is it healthy for human beings to ignore climate change? Will absent-mindedness be good for our children’s and grandchildren’s futures? Something to start thinking about if you haven’t already.
Two students shot in different county schools on the same day recently
Finally, two students were recently shot in our state: Jayda Medrano-Moore was shot near DuVal High School in Prince George’s County in Lanham, Maryland on Sept. 11. She was rushed to the hospital where she died. The unnamed student was 16 years old.
A second student was shot in Baltimore County this time right next to Lansdowne Middle School. Dismissal at Lansdowne Middle and Elementary as Riverview Elementary Schools were delayed by a lockout until the safety of the children and school staffs was secured. The boy who was shot is recovering.
All of the students being shot mostly near schools is both appalling and frustrating. Parents and guardians once felt schools were safe havens for their children. Now, there are guns found in or near schools and children are firing at other children. What is going on inside the heads of the shooters? What long lasting damage is being done by the violence to good students who come to school to learn and be with their friends? Doesn’t it feel as if things are getting more and more out of control? Everybody has to be worried about this.
The violence, pain and destruction are very real, very dangerous and perhaps very near. It occupies our minds and causes upset, insecurity and anxiety to our minds, more than we realize, perhaps more than we know.