CFL fans: Which teams win in Week 1?

Photo: Anthony Moretti 27Nov2016

You tell me.

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A 22-year-old male and a 17-year-old female dead; their deaths chip away at humanity

A 22-year-old male is dead. His crime? Trying to steal a political poster, if the regime that held him prisoner is to believed.

A 17-year-old female is dead? Her crime? Being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Where is our humanity?

Otto Warmbier was in North Korea a couple years ago, when he was arrested, charged, put on trial, convicted and sentenced to hard labor. The Associated Press picks up the story from there.

The UVa student was held for more than 17 months and medically evacuated from North Korea last week. Doctors said he returned with severe brain damage, but it wasn’t clear what caused it.

Warmbier died today. He was 22 years old.

An autopsy almost certainly will be done; but even if it identifies a cause of death, the punishment went well beyond the crime. A young man — and who knows what he might have accomplished in life — is gone.

Warmbier’s death was announced only a few hours after a 17-year-old Virginia teenager was killed. Nabra Hassanen was doing little more than exiting the mosque where she had been praying when something went very wrong. According to FOX 5 in Washington,

A man is facing charges after police say he killed a 17-year-old Reston girl whose body was believed to have been found in a pond hours after being reported missing during an early morning incident in Virginia. …

The 22-year-old suspect appeared in court on Monday for his arraignment and has been ordered held without bond.

On Monday afternoon, Fairfax County police say the killing appears to be the result of a road rage incident between Torres and the group of teenagers walking and riding bikes along a roadway. Police say they have no evidence that the murder was a hate crime and the victim was targeted because of her race or religion.

Road rage. And a 17-year-old young woman — and who knows what she might have achieved in life — is gone.

The normal wave of life is destroyed when the world loses its young. These are the people who bury their forebears; it shouldn’t ever be the other way around. An Ohio family and a Virginia family will never be whole.


Youthful exuberance. Gone.

A never-known number of dreams. Gone.

Potential accomplishments. Gone.

Where is our humanity?

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BREAKING: U.S. student held by Pyongyang for 17 months is dead

The Associated Press has the details.

The family announced his death in a statement released by UC Health Systems, saying, “It is our sad duty to report that our son, Otto Warmbier, has completed his journey home. Surrounded by his loving family, Otto died today at 2:20pm.”

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A week ago, he learned what he truly means to be dating a rape victim.

Note: I know the author of the words you are about to read. With her permission, I’m posting them, which she wrote in a different forum. She gave me permission to identify her by name; I’m choosing not to do that. I admire this young woman a lot; she’s a friend to both my wife and me. 

A week ago to date, I had sex for the first time with my new boyfriend. A week ago, he learned what he truly means to be dating a rape victim. I would give anything for him to not have learned that in the way that he did.

While making out, I enjoy feeling his hand on my throat. It isn’t choking, it is just the presence of his hand there. There was nothing to say that I wouldn’t enjoy it during sex, and I did enjoy it. That is, I enjoyed it until there was a slight change in pressure and millisecond of pain. That millisecond of pain sent me back to the years of sexual torture I endured at the hands of my ex. I grabbed his hand and pulled it off of my neck, which was extremely easy since he didn’t fight me at all and moved with me. I tried to stay calm, but he wasn’t getting out of me fast and enough, so I ended up kicking him off of me with my legs. I closed my legs tightly and covered my face. Telling myself that this wasn’t AJ, that the person naked in bed with me was not going to hurt me. I could hear him asking me what was wrong and what happened, but all I could think about was when I was choked to the point of almost blacking out. I started having a panic attack as more memories came flooding back into my head. Then, I had a mental breakdown about the fact that I was having a panic attack. The first time having sex with a boy I really like, and I have a panic attack.

I ended up curling up on my side and crying. He laid down next to me and watched me, wishing he could do something but knowing that he couldn’t. Eventually, I started speaking: a list of things I wish I didn’t know. I wish I didn’t know what it’s like to be a rape victim. I wish I didn’t know what feeling choked until you black out feels like. I wish I didn’t know what it feels like to be run train on. I wish I didn’t know what a belt feels like against my back. I wish I didn’t know what it feels like to feel my body pinned down against my will. I wish I didn’t know what my body betraying me feels like. The list just went on and on. I was probably listing things that I wish I didn’t know for a few minutes. Then, when I was done listing things that I wish I didn’t know, I said, “I wish I was back with my team.”

You see, I moved halfway across the country two weeks ago. I left my team behind. I was talking to this guy for two months before the move just so that I knew somebody besides my dad when I got to where I moved to. Just being in proximity to my team reminds me of how loved I am. The only pictures I have around my room are the pictures of my team. When I’m upset, my team grounds me. I was lying naked in bed with a guy I really like and all I could think about was how much I miss my team. That, and how I destroyed something that should have had an amazing ending.

I felt my victimhood a lot last week because of that. I’m gradually finding my survivor status again, but it takes some time to rebuild after it has been torn apart. Don’t lose hope when you feel your victimhood, keep fighting until you find your survivor status again.

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Just asking: Why pick on Cuba but support China?

Photo: Anthony Moretti 19Jan2017

I’m not going to make this a detailed or well-researched blog post.

Rather, I’m asking a question in hopes of getting a conversation started: The Trump administration is rolling back efforts made by President Obama to open more doors between the U.S. and Cuba. Needless to say, there is skepticism about such a decision.

Cuba’s Communist past (and present) seems to not sit well with the current president

So, then please explain why he is so eager to maintain positive relations with China, and why he’s done nothing to rein in Americans who would want to visit that country?

Posted in America, China, Communism, Cuba, diplomacy, international news, international relations, international travel, tourism, Trump administration, United States | Leave a comment

Looking for a Republican rabbi? Look far and wide.

Photo: Anthony Moretti 11Jun2017

The New York Times summarizes a recent survey examining the political preferences of the leaders of America’s most popular religions. (For what it’s worth, you won’t find Islam on the list, and the reason is mentioned in the story.)

“It’s a reflection of the ongoing sorting we have in American life,” said Mark Chaves, a professor of sociology, religion and divinity at Duke University. “Why would we think that religion is immune to that?” …

“They’re like members of Congress,” Mr. Hersh said. “They have constituents, but they’re also expected to lead.”



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CFL fans: You tell me. Will it be 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5

J.C. Sherritt and me before Grey Cup 104; Photo: Dominic Moretti

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