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PSU has no place in New Year’s bowl

PSU (7-5) to play on New Year’s Day?

A five-loss team accepts an invitation for a NYD bowl game?

While at least 30 teams in the country with better records deserve to play on Jan 1. Penn State should have declined the invitation. Shows the lack of integrity of coach Franklin and the football program at State College.

Penn State football … a disgrace … again

Pete Whelan, Bradford

History of Big Lies

Big Lies die hard.

One in American history before Donald Trump’s Big Lie shares a quality: Both have been big money makers.

The older lie was that a Protestant missionary named Marcus Whitman “saved Oregon” for the United States from the treacherous British. In “Murder at the Mission: A Frontier Killing, its Legacy of Lies, and the Taking of the American West,” Blaine Harden describes the lie: That Whitman, a doctor who had set up a Protestant Calvinist mission near what is now Walla Walla, WA, made a heroic 1843 horseback ride across the Rockies to reach President John Tyler, and persuaded him not to trade what became Oregon, Washington and Idaho to Britain for cod-fishing rights off Newfoundland.

Whitman had made the ride, but to Boston to persuade the missionary board to reverse a decision to cease funding his mission because of back biting and ineffectiveness in converting Indians. He succeeded. But three years later he and his wife were killed by Cayuse Indians — they saw a failed “medicine man” worsening a deadly measles epidemic — famous as the Whitman Massacre.

Propagated by a missionary colleague, the Big Lie was a big money savior for fledgling Whitman College in Walla Walla as well as Protestant missionary organizations — and taught in schools as fact — for well in to the 20th century, decades after it had been debunked.

Our Big Lie will live as long as gullible Trumpists float dollar bills down on the con man at Mar-a-Lago.

John N. Rippey, Zion

No ‘I’ in team

Today, athletes can’t spell “team.” Someone told them there’s an “I” in the word. They work all season to make it to a bowl game and when they get there they walk. At PSU only Dotson has to be concerned about losing money if injured. The rest of those quitters may not even get drafted until free agency. The very vast majority don’t get hurt. Only the team is harmed when the starters leave two weeks early. It’s not only at PSU but look at Pitt. QB Pickett is the only reason they made it to a New Year’s bowl game and he walked away from them. While these players take spelling lessons they need to learn to spell commitment as well. The universities provide a free education but the players turn their back on the school and their teammates.

We are TEAM.

Ron Carbonara, State College

Proposed House districts map Is fairer

House Majority Leader Kerry Benninghoff would have us believe that the newly proposed legislative map for the state House is a purely partisan endeavor drawn to assure a Democratic majority for the coming decade.

So, was it really a partisan endeavor? We know that both Democratic and Republican lawmakers on the commission which created the map were able to participate in its development. Neither side was shut out. We know that the public was afforded multiple opportunities to participate resulting in input from a wide variety of mapping experts, community representatives, public officials and private citizens. We know that the commission made its process open and transparent, the latest example being the availability of the current proposed map for public evaluation and feedback.

Was it drawn to assure a Democratic majority? It is early to fully evaluate its likely impact but non-partisan, good government groups such as Fair Districts PA and Draw the Lines PA generally believe that the proposed House map is much more balanced politically, though it still gives Republicans a slight advantage. And in a recent CDT article Spotlight PA indicated that the proposed map is fairer based on “standards … mandated under the state constitution and embraced by the courts.”

So. Purely partisan endeavor? Hardly. Drawn to assure a Democratic majority? It would appear not. But it is fairer. And that makes it something our elected state “representatives” should be supporting rather than demonizing.

Ron Williams, Pennsylvania Furnace


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