The 24-hour rule: An early-2018 practice


When my son played hockey, he had several really good coaches along the way. One of which spoke to the players, and he followed by addressing the parents after a really bad loss. “When a game like this one is lost, I have a rule, and I encourage you as parents to abide by it with your sons. Don’t talk about the game for 24 hours. Let your emotions settled down, then listen to your son. No need for fake encouragement, and by waiting a day, you’ll be less likely to scream and shout after a loss like this one.”

When the news broke on 45’s description of Haiti and African nations as “shithole countries“, my heart broke as well. To be clear, that DJT is a racist— as well as a liar, sexual predator, 3-times divorced, certifiable nut-case— is not anything new to me or anyone else.

As some of you know, my grandfather is from Afghanistan: where Trump thinks they are all terrorists. My grandmother is from Mexico: where Trump thinks all Mexicans are rapists and running drugs across the border. (By the way, except those in my family reading this, how many Afghan-Latino-White people do you know? Please raise your hands: higher!) So, my family and I come from shithole countries.

As some of you know, most of my work and service within InterVarsity has been with international student ministry: and many of these students were born, raised, educated in the Caribbean and in African nations like Egypt, Madagascar, Kenya, and Senegal: North, South, East, and West. And: according to Trump, all shithole countries sending their best and brightest for education in the USA.

And, my wife’s family comes from southern China: And not just there but throughout Asia, as do the families of my friends, neighbors, colleagues, and the faculty I serve. Because none of these beloved and beautiful people look like white people, they must also originate from shithole countries.

I will add parenthetically, that, DJT’s use of the N-word (“Norway”) notwithstanding, Norwegians have little incentive to migrate to the USA. Indeed, the contrasts between the two nations make Norway far more palatable as a destination to live.

Returning to the topic at hand, these are me and my people: and the executive of the United States deems us all as refuse for the toilet. The level of insult and disrespect caused me to boil internally with anger. While I have cautiously stewed for the last 24+ hours, others have immediately come hard after DJT: especially in the media. I was a little surprised, I must admit. The reporting and the analysis seemed a little late to the party: It was like they couldn’t say he was a racist before but they are now? Nonetheless, I was glad to see and hear this accurate description of the president out in the open. Remarkably, there hasn’t been a substantive denial of his racist vulgarity.

What I need to say next has been said by others, likely with more forceful rhetoric and far more felicity. I don’t need to prove my humanity to Trump and other white supremacists. I really don’t. Let’s not let the terms of this discourse get set by debates about immigration, although, to be sure, matters of immigration, policing, economics, education, and voting rights will most certainly follow the starting point I will endorse.

I am proposing we start with the reality that if you’re a human, you’re a human. It’s not about your skin color, or your family, or the geographic origins of your family. It’s not. There is a lot of theological anthropology going on out there, but some of it is getting hijacked by discussions of whether we can allow, for example, Haitians who are physicians to legally immigrate but those who do not possess “skills” will remain unqualified for migration to the US. Let’s not commodify people. Let’s not use bodies to advance the well-being and economic prosperity of—let’s face it— white people, of those with whiteness (available to anyone, regardless of ethnicity), and of those who already possess economic power to insulate themselves from the debate about who can label who and thus determine who can be a resident in the US. If you make someone’s humanity about how it inevitably fits into a business model of any kind, your theological proposal has already been hijacked by other powers, other agendas, and other missions.

So, in case there was any doubt: I had to practice the 24-hour rule, because I was ready to scream and shout. The erasure of human dignity could not have gone any lower by the president. It will be interesting to see how those in Congress act next: not just with statements of feeling (further) appalled, but with the kind action that has teeth in it that restores and asserts human dignity throughout the globe. It will be especially interesting to listen to sermons this Sunday, especially in those evangelical congregations where the word of God is preached. Does God have a word—from within a sermon—for his people during this season of life? Or is a prior commitment to “a preaching series” remain inviolable, no matter what the current events may present and social exigencies may manifest? One wonders if any evangelical preacher can effectively remain credible by “keeping the world outside” without naming what every single member of the congregation knows before they enter and what they inevitably face when they exit the sanctuary? What does the preached word of God have to say about human dignity?

I’m glad I practiced the 24 hour rule, but I’m still angry, and I would commend to preachers everywhere the Lord Jesus Christ. God help you with power and wisdom as you preach the Gospel that includes the Lord Jesus restoring the human person to her/his God-endowed-and-designed human dignity: and naming persons and their sources of power that would deny God, Jesus, and his mission.


Boston Bruins wins 2011 Stanley Cup

Tonight, the Boston Bruins decisively beat the Vancouver Canucks, 4-0. Wasn’t even close.

Vancouver’s D-men really took the team out of the series. First, Aaron Ross was suspended for the series because he cleaned the clock of Nathan Horton in Game 3, and in Game 6, Mason Raymond got ram-rodded into the boards and – get this- cracked vertebra that are behind his stomach. Too weird. The point being, that losing both D-men left the Canucks in a seriously deficient posture for winning the Cup in a 7-game series.

But: give credit where credit is due: Tim Thomas, Goalie for Boston, caught fire in the Eastern Conference Finals against Tampa Bay. And the Bruins rode his back all the way to winning the Cup. Thomas stopped everything that came his way. Also credit the defensive play from those in front of Thomas; frequently, those 5 in front of him stopped pucks long before they got close to the crease of Thomas.

Also, give credit to Boston: they won 3 out of 4 series by winning a Game 7: and the Stanley Cup was won on the road. Not easy by any stretch of the imagination. Very impressive.

Congratulations to the Boston Bruins! Unfortunately, this is now begins the low, and quiet season of the year in sports: can’t wait for College Football to begin…August? Definitely in September!

2011 Stanley Cup Finals: My Prediction

Vodpod videos no longer available.

OK: I’m late, but I had this one down early.

Vancouver v. Boston: Canucks in 6. I could be wrong here in a major way if Thomas keeps on playing goal as he has so far. The 1-0 loss last night- the game-winning goal scored with 19 seconds to play?- indicates that Thomas is playing out of his mind.

Torres’ game-winner: I don’t care who the goalie is, no one is going to stop that shot if Torres remains unchecked. A great shot, no doubt about it.

It was a little chippy early on, and the zebras kept the parade to the penalty box a steady flow. Obviously, neither PP unit could get anything going, and in the case of Boston, this will be their downfall.

I expected the shot tally to tip more toward Vancouver: no so for this game (36-34, Boston). Not sure what to make of that.

Review of 2011 NHL Conference Finals

Holy sch-nike! My apologies: life has been swamped for the whole month of May, and June might yield some more space and time for some important updates.

Eastern Conference

#2 Boston v. #5 Tampa Bay: Boston in 7 (my prediction: Boston in 6). Look out: finally, a goalie got hot, and what a great time for that to happen: Tim Thomas is stellar. Give the Bolts- and their “rookie” GM, Steve Yzerman- tons of credit for some really game play, and stretching the series in ways that no one expected. Meanwhile, Boston could’ve-should’ve put this series away much sooner, were it not for an abysmal power-play percentage. I can look up the number, but you might get ill reading it: club hockey teams should be permitted to play for the Bruins when they get a man-advantage. Their upcoming foe, Vancouver, has nothing to worry about if they take penalties.

Western Conference

#1 Vancouver v. #2 San Jose: Canucks in 6 (my prediction: Sharks in 7). What a bummer. You hate to be a whiner about officiating when you’re on the losing end of a series, but the Canucks were always up an extra two men on the ice in this series. The zebras really did a great job of keeping Vancouver in this series. Just pathetic officiating. (But: see here for an interesting take on how to complain with dignity.) Meanwhile, the Sharks stopped attacking the goal as they had against LA and Detroit: and that tilted the ice toward Antti Niemi. It’s one thing to say “We’ve got a Cup-winning goalie!” and it’s another thing to actually play defense and offense that keeps the other team’s goalie honest. Face it: if you don’t play defense, you won’t win. Dan Boyle put it best: “This series was ours to lose: we were the better team.” So true. But, the goal the Sharks lost on- in double OT!- indicates that the Sharks really did not believe they had to play whistle to whistle: maybe they weren’t the better team after all.

My Bad: (Late) Conference Finals Predictions 2011 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs

My apologies: I’ve been busier than humanly possible, and my current location for getting an internet connection is hard to believe I’m still in North America…

Eastern Conference

#2 Boston vs. #5 Tampa Bay: Boston in 6. OK: as I write this, the Bolts just even the series 2-all. Wow: the Lightening have some spunk. Still, my sense is that the Bruins are just getting warmed up.

Western Conference

#1 Vancouver vs. #2 San Jose: Sharks in 7. Here, we have the Canucks up 2-1 in this series. The 3rd game was pretty lively according to the reports I read, and the highlights I saw in passing showed the Sharks playing with passion and power. What ever it was that got them going: they should put it in a bottle and market that stuff: because Vancouver had no answer for San Jose aggressiveness. The ice was tilted the whole way. Only one thing should keep the Sharks from advancing: dumb penalties. Jamie McGinn should consider himself more than lucky that he wasn’t suspended for hitting two guys and injuring both. He’s probably a big target for Game #4…

Review of My Second Round Predictions of the 2011 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs

Short Version: Let’s review: The Sharks are in! (Whew!)

Eastern Conference:

#1 Washington v. #5 Tampa Bay: Tampa Bay, 4-0!!! (My prediction: Washington in 5) No one saw this coming: no one. TB played lights-out hockey from the start of Game #1 to the end of Game #4. Ovechkin et al: no where to be found: same may be true of the head coach at the end of the playoffs. Dwayne Roloson played the series that was out of his mind. Could he be the hot goalie of the playoffs?

#2 Philadelphia v. #3 Boston: Boston, 4-0!!! (My prediction: Boston in 7) Brooms again! The Flyers were nowhere to be found in this series. Tim Thomas, Boston goalie, played great but did not have much of a challenge from Philly.

Western Conference:

#1 Vancouver v. #5 Nashville: Vancouver, 4-2. (My prediction: Vancouver in 6). OK: I drilled this one. Pekka Rinne had a great run, but Nashville did not have enough D-men to help him out: the Canucks kept shooting and they won the series. Note toward the next series for the Canucks: the Predators hit them and took them off the puck in ways that were surprising, and the Sedin twins were noticeably absent from the score sheet for precisely this reason.

#2 San Jose Sharks v. #3 Detroit: Sharks, 4-3. (My prediction: Sharks in 6). Well, well: I guess the Red Wings did not want to go down that easily! After the Sharks ran out to a 3-0 series lead, everyone was thinking brooms or a Game 5, and get ready for the Conference Finals. No: give the Red Wings credit: Games 5 & 6 were really impressive, especially the former in the 3rd period comeback being down a couple of goals. Still, Detroit injuries plus superior forward play by the Sharks just wore the Red Wings down. That’s playoff hockey: draping your will over your opponent. When the Sharks got away from that kind of play: they lost three games. When they played it, Detroit looked like a club team.