Wednesday, April 26, 2017

13 Reasons, Too Many People Ending Their Own Lives

I have written on suicide before. Now it has become tragically so common and even popular that the news is breaking their unwritten rule and reporting on it more. Also the current #1 series on Netflix is the novel adapted "13 Reasons Why".

All of this also ties into bullying, torment, and of course mental illness. In "13 Reasons", the young lady, Hannah Baker, recorded 13 audio cassettes as to why she had no choice but to end her life. Many of these stories and people mentioned included those from her high school that tormented and harassed her. This obviously isn't a new topic but instead one that needs continued addressing.

Steve Stephens was the Cleveland, OH killer that murdered at least one person while on FB Live, then eventually took his own life after stopping at a McDonald's. It has been implied that mental illness was obviously involved in this whole ordeal. His own mother then succumbed to a heart attack days later.

The day after Stephens took his own life, convicted NFL player Aaron Hernandez hung himself in his prison cell after being acquitted of one of the charges he was already in for, including killing folks execution style. It has since came out that Hernandez had a same sex lover, and murder Greg Odin because he knew about it. Aaron apparently didn't wanna deal with any criticism or ridicule inside bars so he decided to end it.

The reasons are important in each instance, but the big thing is suicide has become too common when things become dire. Someone needs to be more aware of suicidal people and do everything to prevent this. It is up to the person, but often you have to take responsibility when they can't. That is a common theme in these and other suicides, these folks felt as if they were completely out of options.

Now if you or anyone you know feels this way, please call the Suicide Awareness Hotline at 1-800-273-8255. Also, use your own support circle. We have to end this madness!

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

The Knicks are Happy, For Now

The 2016-2017 NBA Season wraps up for now. You can argue that no one is happier than the New York Knicks.

They are definitely not playoff bound, are in the upper portion of the draft lottery. They have had more drama than The Young and The Restless and Scandal combined this season.

It started with Phil Jackson calling LeBron James and his teammates "a posse." Derrick Rose is always a big storyline with his nagging injuries, but then he suddenly goes missing and none of the coaches know.  Then Phil has had a season long saga with Carmelo Anthony. Many thought he was be traded but never was. Of course you had the Madison Square Garden scuffle between former player Charles Oakley and the Knicks owner that drew even more media attention than the Knicks already receive. Last but not least Joakim Noah  (who knew where Rose was when he went AWOL) gets suspended for taking banned substances.

The Knicks are a far cry from their 90s Patrick Ewing teams and their two time champion teams of the early 70s. They are an embarrassment on and off the court. You have to be as true of a fan as Spike Lee to still be rolling with them.

The owner and the possible lame duck Phil Jackson have some serious reevaluating to do during the off-season. Bringing in better players and All-Stars is a start. Having players that will play together and fit the offensive and defensive schemes is way better.

The Knicks, like the Lakers and other major market teams, will always have the microscope on them. Despite the saying, not all publicity is good publicity. The Knickerbockers have quite an image to rebuild. They need more of an identity other than losers, troublemakers or drama queens.

They are definitely relieved, for now. However, fans, coaches, players and of course the city of New York.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Take Me To The Well

This was another exciting, suspenseful March Madness, even moreso for the Carolinas. The quaint, upstate city of Greenville, SC finally got to host first and second round games once again at the Bon Secours Wellness Arena in downtown. This was the first time in 15 years the Palmetto State was able to do this. The removal of the controversial Confederate Flag from the state capital grounds, coupled with the HB2 bathroom bill from North Carolina, made this all possible.

Duke, North and South Carolina played there and tickets sold out for that Friday and Sunday faster than in any other city. Greenville and "The Well" put on a very first class venue, admist a Confederate Flag supporter from across the way.

"The Well" has grown in popularity over the years. Formerly called the BiLo center, events and concerts are regularly held there. The Harlem Globetrotters, several country music stars such as Luke Bryan and Brad Paisley, and even the late Prince. It's a great venue and an awesome uptown to have these caliber of events.

This didn't matter to the NCAA while the Confederate Flag was flying 100 miles south in Columbia. In 2015, Governor Nikki Haley decided it be removed in the wake of the Charleston 9 mass shooting.

Then last year, HB2 was passed by North Carolina, ruining NCAA events for their entire state as well. The flag was down and HB2 was still in effect so the league decided to give Greenville and The Well another chance.

Hopefully more games will come to Greenville in the future, potentially a preseason NIT.  Yes now HB2 has been repealed in NC. SC should still get more opportunities as well. The Well is an awesome venue but Columbia and Charleston are also good host cities and fine for tourists and fans.

Greenville still has work to do regarding their roads, especially at the 85/385 intersections. They currently have crews working around the clock to improve traffic flow. It's obvious they want more money into their city and a more positive image for the state.

Therefore, take me to "The Well" for any sporting event. I feel confident the NCAA echoes my sediments.