Hillary Clinton

Some Write-In Ideas for Colin Kaepernick

So…NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick has spent a good portion of 2016 kneeling during our national anthem in order to protest against inequality and injustice. And now…he doesn’t vote???

Seriously. He told a reporter he had no plans to vote this year. For anything.

His actions on NFL fields were universally scorned at first. Then, there was a groundswell of support. And he even turned around the opinions of some (like Hall of Fame receiver Jerry Rice) who initially opposed his kneel-downs.

But this move doesn’t make sense at all.

Okay, so both major candidates were weak and you couldn’t bring yourself to vote for either Trump or Clinton. Fill in the circle for a third-party politician like Gary Johnson, which could make a powerful statement about the failures of our two-party system.

Dude! Vote for somebody. A businessman or an educator or a friend you admire. Write in someone! Then use your celebrity status to illuminate the identity of your write-in vote and explain how his or her values would help set the country on the right course.

We’ll give him the benefit of the doubt on the write-in option. Maybe he didn’t understand he could cast a write-in vote. Or worse–he couldn’t think of a single inspirational person. We have some ideas for him…

Ray Allen, the quiet, driven, dedicated and charismatic NBA star, who had an exemplary run on and off the court. He retired last week. He’s got some extra time.


(Credit: ESPN.com)

Abdullah II bin Al-Hussein, the tough and wise King of Jordan, who stands for peace and interfaith dialogue, and who turned around the economy of his country, despite the enormous social challenges presented by Jordan’s geographical proximity to Syria, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, and Israel.


(Credit: inserbia.info)

Laura Casemento, the president of Utica College, who fought hard to punch a hole in the glass ceiling by once turning down a bank presidency because they didn’t offer her a coinciding spot on the board of trustees, and who is presiding over a tuition reduction to $20,000 annually!


(Credit: utica.edu)

Kaepernick wouldn’t even have to choose somebody real to make his point. How about a vote for Dave Kovic, the Kevin Kline movie hero, who resembles the actual president, assumes the Oval Office briefly, and offers common-sense solutions to our problems?


(Credit: thesportspost.com)

Again, the Kaepernick sympathizers will rush to defend his American right not to vote. But, come on. While he was sitting this one out, other athletes–Black, White, Hispanic–were heading to the polls and proudly Tweeting about it.

Arizona Cardinals’ wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald voted. Los Angeles Dodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez voted. The entire Coastal Carolina football team voted. Together.

Yes, Kaepernick makes a powerful statement again by not voting. But not the right type of statement. it’s irresponsible, it’s lazy, and it devalues everything he stood for (or didn’t stand for.)

His protest for justice coupled with his decision not to vote is hypocrisy of the highest order. Choosing not to vote for anyone or anything is apathetic; and it conveys a hopelessness for our country.

Maybe he never truly believed in what he was doing during these national anthems. Maybe he was just taking a knee all this time because he was tired.

Dave Coombs votes and hosts morning drive radio on 100.7 FM WUTQ in Utica.

Rating the Presidential Candidates By Athletic Ability


Photo credit: Business Insider

As the 2016 presidential race kicks into high gear, and Barack Obama gets set to pass the political football to his successor, you may be wondering “Who’s the best jock for the job?”

Okay, maybe you’re not wondering that. Still, many modern presidents have had strong sports associations, from George H.W. Bush’s playing days on Yale’s baseball team to Obama’s golf and basketball habits.

It’s a proven fact that playing sports develops good characteristics, like teamwork and discipline. And practicing how to cheat and get away with it.

For what it’s worth, here’s a breakdown of the main candidates’ athletic backgrounds or influences, and how it might translate to votes and political applications.

Jeb Bush was captain of his prep school tennis team. Those skills might come into play at some point, like volleying issues back and forth with other world leaders. Or, maybe physically clobbering Putin with a racquet. Otherwise, tennis may not be a big help. (B-)

Ben Carson, while appearing to be fit, does not seem to have any actual experience in sports, other than playing with his kids in the back yard. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. However, even Obama would probably poke fun at Carson’s basketball form and uniform in this picture:

Ben Carson-hoops-Vince Rodriguez

Photo credit: Victor Rodriguez

Untuck the shirt and ditch the belt. Come on, Ben! It’s game day! (C-)

John Kasich may not be much better at hoops. During a campaign stop at a gymnasium in New Hampshire, he displayed an ugly jump shot. But, at least he had the persistence to get the job done that day from behind the three-point arc, finally connecting on his ninth attempt in front of reporters and cameras. The only problem is: you don’t get nine tries to fix the economy or prevent a world war. (C)

Martin O’Malley maintains his physical fitness by following the rigorous P90X video workouts. If you’ve seen pictures of the former Maryland governor without a shirt, it’s clear that “gun control” is not an issue. (B+)

Ted Cruz has no apparent connection to sports other than through his body man. Bruce Redden was a placekicker for the Oklahoma State football team before hanging up his cleats and picking up a briefcase to trail Cruz around. Also, Cruz admits to playing some sports as a teenager, but only to avoid further ridicule he received as a young nerd. Cruz coincidentally resembles current Duke basketball star Grayson Allen, as The Washington Post pointed out in a 2015 photo comparison:


Cruz is the one on the right. Of course. (D)

Marco Rubio played defensive back at a Miami high school and was good enough to score a football scholarship to Tarkio College in Missouri, where he spent one year before eventually securing degrees at the University of Florida and the University of Miami. If he’d played football at either of those schools, he wouldn’t be where he is today. (A-)

Rand Paul also played defensive back at his high school in Texas, and was on the swim team at Baylor University. So, he may be the field’s top pure athlete. (A-)

Chris Christie was a catcher on his high school baseball team. The position calls for brains and is considered a grind on the body, just like a political campaign. Christie’s body and popularity may be past their prime. (B)

Bernie Sanders ran track in high school and claims he once notched a 4:37 mile. The Vermont senator grew up a big Brooklyn Dodgers’ baseball fan and played slow-pitch softball for a team called the People’s Republic of Burlington. From the looks of the photo below, he wouldn’t have any problems throwing out the first pitch on Opening Day. But if he’s doing it as President, he’d better not go underhand. (B+)

bernie sanders-softball

Photo credit: Burlington Free Press

Donald Trump warns that the socialism Sanders espouses will eliminate golf, a sport that is currently struggling on its own in many areas around the country. Trump is a single-digit golf handicapper. His game will no doubt suffer if he ever really gets the chance to Make America Great Again. (B)

Hillary Clinton has listed speed-walking as a pastime she’s enjoyed. So, she might want to pick up the pace. (D)

Based on these stats, who do you like in 2016?

Dave Coombs hosts a morning radio show on 100.7 FM WUTQ. He rides a bike and will never run for president.

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