War-Time Perspectives



This Sunday, the Bills will travel into the hostile confines of the RCA Dome to try and detain the explosive offensive attack of the Indianapolis Colts in a battle of fierce AFC East rivals. It has kind of a hollow ring to it with everything else going on in the world, doesn't it? Compared to the craggy desolation of the mountains of Afghanistan, the RCA Dome is the equivalent of a Holiday Inn. So were the jungles of Vietnam, for that matter.

And while the Colts high-flying offense may well shred through a lean Bills secondary, sportswriters might think twice before using the word "explosive." As for the Bills and Colts being rivals, we all know there are a lot bigger fish to fry now than Edgerrin James and Peyton Manning. We have a very real enemy now, and don't think for a second that blowing Afghanistan back to the Stone Age and serving bin Laden's head on a platter is the answer to all our problems. While bin Laden may well be the quarterback of the operation, we have to assume they have a lot of capable back-ups waiting in the wings when bin Laden goes down.

For one thing, there are several other third-world countries that are notorious for serving as safe havens for Islamic militants, such as Sudan, Libya and Iran. Secondly, while bin Laden may well be the undisputed leader of these terrorist networks, their branches run deep, and they may very well run right over the Atlantic Ocean and into every major city in America. Maybe, just maybe, they could extend into the serene academic environment of SUNY Buffalo, into your classrooms. ...

The point is folks, the enemy is out there, they're coming from all directions and we, as a nation, can't be late to the dance.

During the first UB-Rutgers game, the sounds of "Rutgers sucks!" resonated around UB stadium as the Scarlet Knights took control of the game. At every Bills- Dolphins game I've attended, the most popular T-shirt in the stadium declared "F&%K Miami." And Red Sox fans take out their decades of frustration every time the Yankees fans come to town by bombarding them with verbal assaults.

The acts that transpired last Tuesday have totally changed our perspectives in both the sports world and the nation. These fellow cities and universities aren't the enemies. Next time the visiting team comes to your home city, remember that above all, we are all Americans. There are a lot of people out there deserving of our hate and anger, and none we know of play on the Dolphins, Yankees or Scarlet Knights.

When these terrorist attacks took place at the World Trade Center, they weren't just an attack of the American people, but rather an attack on the American market and our capitalistic culture. As the NFL finalizes their decision to reschedule the regular season games while scrapping "Wild Card Weekend," they are applying the type of principles that a lot of people in the Middle East obviously don't agree with. What would you as a fan rather have: playoff football and a much higher chance that your team makes the playoffs in a 12 team field, or week-two football being played in December and the number of playoff teams being reduced to eight?

The only reason that the league is choosing to replay these games is that the players and owners want to share in the revenues of the 15 home games that they decided to postpone. While the rest of America sleepwalked through last week in a zombie-like haze, the NFL decided to take the week off. Phil Hansen, one of the leaders of the players union, stated that he would sacrifice his game check to be able to take the week off and pay his respects to the dead. It was a noble statement, but he and the rest of the players have been pretty quiet as to where their game day checks went. Actions speak louder then words, and the fact that all these players and owners are willing to minimize their chances for post-season play for a few extra bucks says volumes over the integrity of the game and what the NFL stands for.

A lot of Americans are getting all fired up, wondering what America is waiting for in not blowing Afghanistan to kingdom come. That would be the football equivalent of all-out blitzing every play. It's a waste of resources, and eventually you will get burned. To paraphrase President George Bush, he's not going to send over a $2 million missile to blow up an abandoned $10 tent and hit a donkey in the ass. War is a game that makes football and its various schemes look about as complicated as tic-tac-toe. So, to all the armchair quarterbacks, sit back, stock up your fridge, and stay tuned to CNN, because this one's going to take a while.