Sunday, November 13, 2005

One Small Step for Man...One Giant Leap

If I told you the story below without an explanation you would likely believe that Rick was just pulling on your leg again. I’m not. This is an actual AP press release from yesterday, November 12, 2005.

Really, it’s real! Read along:

PHILADELPHIA (AP) - The Rev. Jesse Jackson called the Philadelphia Eagles' punishment of Terrell Owens "much too severe."

Jackson said in a statement released Friday that Owens could have been more professional when he publicly complained about his contract, his team and the Eagles's organization.

But Jackson said Owens' suspension without pay for four games and deactivation for the rest of the season is "much too severe for the charge" and hurts the athlete's NFL career at its height.

The civil rights activist said the level of punishment could have been warranted if Owens had been caught shaving points, selling drugs, carrying a gun or fighting fans without sufficient restraint.

"This does not warrant a one-year ban from the game," Jackson said, adding that the Eagle's should release Owens to the open market or free agency if they no longer want to associate with him.
Ralph Nader, a consumer activist and former presidential candidate, has already called for the suspension to be rescinded.

Owens was suspended last week after he said in an interview that the Eagles showed "a lack of class" for not publicly recognizing his 100th career touchdown catch, and that the team would be better off with Green Bay's Brett Favre as quarterback. He has since apologized.

And now my report about this story:

The International Council for Rational Thinking ruled yesterday on the appeals of three individual cases.

The initial ruling was on the appeal of Terrell Owens. Owens had been previously convicted of blaming everyone and everything around him for behavior appropriate to a three year old. The Council ruled that there was no new evidence to refute the conviction and that the original trial had been flawless at the judicial level. Owens punishment of being banished to an island with no reporters or cameras until he had matured was upheld. He is also not allowed to blame others for his personal behavior during this period.

The second ruling came in the case of Ralph Nader. Nader was convicted last year of making continuing baseless accusations against others. The Council ruled that the law of ’having publicly stuck your nose where it most definitely does not belong over 1, 000 times’ had been correctly adjudicated in the Nader trial. There was no exonerating evidence presented at the appeal. Nader was sentenced to go with Mr. Owens to the island. Nader, when interviewed, said there was contradictory evidence available to him but that the government had packaged the evidence in containers that were not safe for him to use, probably laced with invisible poison gas.

Late in the day the Council also ruled on the Reverend Jesse Jackson's case. Jackson’s conviction for ‘conduct detrimental to his stated cause’ was upheld by a smiling council of jurors. Apparently Jackson had threatened the council with a Freedom March to free all the black children imprisoned for being illiterate. When advised by his attorney that there were no black children imprisoned in America for being illiterate, Jackson leapt to his feet and began to sing an old Baptist Hymn, encouraging the jurors to join in. Despite the theatrics of the Reverend Jackson, his conviction was upheld and he also will be sent to the ‘media free’ island with Owens and Nader.

This reporter attempted interviews with the general public to gauge reaction to the rulings. Nationwide celebrations were ongoing however, and impeded my efforts.

Interviewed following his hearing, Jackson said the three will organize a march on the island, where the three would represent the 'holy trinity'. When advised that there would be no media coverage available, Jackson broke down in tears.

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