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Don’t boycott the NFL, boycott ESPN

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In my childhood, Sport Center was on for a couple sessions on mornings when there was no school. Nowadays, ESPN has shifted away from its core focus to pursue other matters. What started out as a sports channel has now become a sports gossip channel. And with this deviation fictional celebrity LaVar Ball is a household name like the Kardashians and Colin Kaepernick is covered weekly, which is more airtime than a jobless backup quarterback should receive. Many people took their disagreement with Kaepernick out on the NFL. And I’m here to say that they shouldn’t.

First, I would like to point out the obvious fact that Colin Kaepernick doesn’t have a job in the NFL. The NFL franchises have heeded the fact that Kaepernick is poison for the brand. In the NFL, there is a direct correlation between talent and the amount of distraction that is tolerable for a team. Kaepernick failed this metric with flying colors. The NFL does believe in second chances (note: he walked out on his contract before being cut) and he blew that opportunity too. The Baltimore Ravens were the only team interested in offering a second chance. Ray Lewis was even trying to help him out but Kaepernick’s girlfriend tweeted a racist photo comparing owner Steve Biscotti to Candy from Django.

You don’t insult the people who are trying to get your boyfriend a job. It’s a direct reflection of his bad attitude.

Now I understand that Kaepernick’s stupidity has spread, however NFL teams are clamping down, such as the Cleveland Browns locking arms with each other and men and women in uniform for their opening game. The NFL has heeded your displeasure. Reward their behavior.

Second, we shouldn’t judge the whole brand by the actions of a few. We certainly reject calls for gun control when someone used a “AR-15” in a high-profile shooting. We reject that the few people who so happen to be white supremacists are representative of all white people. Why? Because we believe it’s wrong to judge a whole group of people for the actions of a few. It’s called reasoning and accountability, things we small government folks are fond of. If the NFL rampantly promoted liberal ideology, the situation would be different. Furthermore, it isn’t the NFL’s authority to make people stand. They don’t contract with players, but furthermore we would and should complain if they took to fine people for their political speech. As conservatives, it’s hypocritical for us to demand companies to punish unpopular speech, especially after Google. But the NFL let the free market outcome take place and teams decided against signing Kaepernick. The NFL didn’t force a team to keep him in the league. They aren’t shaming teams for not signing him despite the likes of Tom Savage. The NFL doesn’t have a toxic culture promoting liberal propaganda. ESPN does.

ESPN’s departure from sports coverage has directly corresponded with their entrance into being liberal propaganda outlet. Jemele Hill is just the latest ice cube in a toxic Kool-Aid. ESPN hardly batted an eye and gave a halfhearted apology for her insulting the president. However, Linda Cohn was suspended by ESPN for saying they were being too political. Curt Schilling was fired for opposing transgenderism. But even beyond which political opinions are deemed acceptable for their employees, ESPN uses its platform to promote its liberal agenda. It glorified Michael Sam for being gay. He never played a down in the NFL. They gave him an award for being gay. The following year, they gave Bruce “Caitlyn” Jenner the courage award for being dressing up as a woman. He hasn’t been an athlete in decades, but that doesn’t matter for the sports gossip channel.

ESPN’s toxicity is comparable to that of CNN. The good news is, ESPN is not a monopoly. There’s FS1, NBCSN, NFL Network, MLB Network, NHL Network(not that ESPN covers hockey) and more! We want sports not liberal sports gossip. We should send ESPN that message. The NFL was a false victim for our displeasure mixing sports and politics. We shouldn’t take notice of one player’s protest. Furthermore, there are a lot of players out there who use their platform for good like Derek Carr. But the amount of publicity Kaepernick has received shouldn’t reflect on the NFL. It should reflect on ESPN. They glamorize it. Bottom line: If you want to watch football where players respect the flag, watch the NFL. If you care to know the few players who hate this country, watch ESPN.

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Entertainment and Sports

Interview with Christopher Shaw

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Interview with Christopher Shaw

I was given the opportunity to interview Christopher Shaw. He is the director of the upcoming movie, Church PeopleChurch People is “romantic comedy satire” about a celebrity youth pastor caught up in the marketing machine of his mega church. In the interview, Christopher discusses the redemptive story arc involving what is a sad reality within churches today.

But the journey leading up to this movie was no cakewalk. Christopher’s start came from making Youtube videos. He then built a network of Christian comedians on Facebook, most notably the relationship between he and Thor Ramsay, the writer and star of Church People. They finally began their working relationship at the 168 Film Festival back in 2010. During this festival, they produced the short Skip Listening in a short period of time, the entire process taking no more than 18 days. Skip Listening won accolades at the festival and so the two have continued working together ever since.

As a Director, Christopher appreciates a high quality film. This was his critique of faith based movies, however he emphasized his optimism for how much the category has improved over the years. Passion of the Christ, he says was a breakthrough in closing this disparity. Since then, a number of faith-based films have proven to be remarkable returns on investment. As I pointed out in the interview, Christian comedy, remains rather untapped in its potential, which is a reason I sought to interview someone behind Church People.

Because this interview was for Startup Christ Presents, one of the goals of the interview is to tap their entrepreneurial wisdom. Christopher was not lacking for advice to give. The theme of the advice can be summarized by saying unless God is saying otherwise, start making content. Technology has increased the ease of entrance with film and distribution of content.

These are some of the highlights from the interview. You can watch, or rather listen, on youtube, and if you feel so inclined, subscribe to Christianity Visualized, a new channel I am working on. More to come on that later.

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Conspiracy Theory

No, Symeon Star-Eyes is not the Night King

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No Symeon Star-Eyes is not the Night King

A week ago, HBO dropped the long awaited and highly anticipated Game of Thrones final season trailer. This take may be late take, but oft times, I believe in letting the hot takes simmer down so the voices who aren’t seeking quick views for their lackluster analysis stand out. Now a lot of fan accounts on Youtube have boasted finding all these “easter eggs” in the trailer that just are not there. Particularly a lot of people are being misled by the theory that the legendary Symeon Star-Eyed is the Night King. The theory has the vote of confidence from Cosmo and its readers.

This theory existed on Reddit long before the trailer dropped. It goes so far to suggest that Symeon Star-Eyes was perhaps a Stark, but definitely from the North because the “North would want their own hero amongst the greatest heroes in Westeros history.” There is no evidence to suggest why Brandon the Builder, Breaker, Shipwright, and Burner aren’t sufficient legends. Knighthood is tied to the Seven, so it is unlikely he was from the North… But I need to slow myself down. The Game of Thrones trailer featured a star-eyed Night King reigniting this theory.

image

The seven pointed star is symbolic of the Faith of the Seven, the religion of the Andals, which would make, according to this theory, the Night King an Andal in origin. The belief that the Night King is the Andal Symeon Star-Eyes, a fabled knight from the Age of Heroes, is self defeating. Let’s first address the proposed evidence.

“There was a knight once who couldn’t see,” Bran said stubbornly, as Ser Rodrik went on below. “Old Nan told me about him. He had a long staff with blades at both ends and he could spin it in his hands and chop two men at once.”

“Symeon Star-Eyes,” Luwin said as he marked numbers in a book. “When he lost his eyes, he put star sapphires in the empty sockets, or so the singers claim. Bran, that is only a story, like the tales of Florian the Fool. A fable from the Age of Heroes.”

AGOT Bran VII 

Now, it’s important to note that White Walkers, which are referred to as Others, have not directly appeared in the books. In the lore, the Others are always depicted as having blue eyes, like when the when the 13th Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch (allegedly) had sex with one.

“A woman was his downfall; a woman glimpsed from atop the Wall, with skin as white as the moon and eyes like blue stars. Fearing nothing, he chased her and caught her and loved her, though her skin was cold as ice, and when he gave his seed to her he gave his soul as well. He brought her back to the Nightfort and proclaimed her a queen and himself her king, and with strange sorceries he bound his Sworn Brothers to his will.”

AGOT Bran IV

That man was known as the Night’s King, which is a far more plausible than Symeon Star-Eyes for being the Night King. This of course would only be true if the Night King was not an original amongst the Others. For this is generations after the Others were defeated, hence why there is a Night’s Watch. The idea that the Others have changed leadership is a major supposition not supported by either canon material or even the show who depict neither a queen nor power struggle which would likely still remain if an Other form of Symeon Star-Eyes usurped power to declare himself Night King.

And that is the less obvious reason why this fan theory is the Fake News of Game of Thrones theories. The most pressingly clear reason is that there were no Andals during the Long Night. The Andal Invasion did not occur until well into the Age of Heroes. The argument I’ve seen in response to this pressingly obvious fact is that history in Game of Thrones is unreliable. George RR Martin is intentional about using non-reliable narrators as well as writing a history of Westeros that is entirely contingent upon the interpretation of its multiple writers. Therefore the exact timing of the arrival of the Andals is subject to debate. This is all true. However, there is nothing to suggest that the Andals invaded during the Dawn Age. The Age of Heroes began after peace was made with the Children of the Forrest, as explained in the show in season one.

The First Men, who are the other predominant race in Westeros have the Others embedded in their culture, while the Andals generally believe the Others to be no more real than grumpkins and snarks. By the time the Andals arrived in Westeros, we are well into the Age of Heroes. Let’s go into more detail. When the Andals arrived they carved runes of seven pointed stars and brought their faith with them. Their invasion was repelled by the Stark Kings of Winter. Thus, the North remained primarily First Men and worshiped the old gods. House Stark remembers the Others, hence Winter is Coming. The Arryns of the Vale were established towards the very beginning of this time, for the Vale is the nearest landing spot. House Arryn is one of the oldest and purest of the Andal houses, until the current storyline. The Long Night is not in their culture. Lann the Clever had already taken Casterly Rock and established House Lannister. House Lannister bares a maternal lineage to Lann the Clever, a First Man, and has taken on an Andal line. There are FOUR Lannister POV characters. None of them reference their ancestors fighting Others. As you can see, the Andal houses did not experience the Long Night, meaning they Others invaded long before they arrived. So once again, how can Symeon Star-Eyes be the Night King.

Explanation

There are two reasons why the Night King’s, and by extension all Others’ eyes would be shaped as a seven-pointed star. The first is that a dragon must have three heads and a star must have seven points. This is to say that HBO is blowing smoke up people’s asses. The second is that the Children of the Forrest created an abomination to the old gods, whom they worship along with the First Men. This abomination bore resemblance to the faith of the seven, much like how the god Baal resembles numerous other false gods. As for me, I believe the former because the show-runners are not that intricate.

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Conspiracy Theory

Sci-Fi short film offers terrifying future of authoritarianism after 2nd Amendment repeal

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Sci-Fi short film offers terrifying future of authoritarianism after 2nd Amendment repeal

Warning: Adult language and some adult content.

The folks over at Dust have mastered the art of the short science fiction film. Their take on an authoritarian future is no exception and strikes a little too close to home for conservatives.

Imagine if nanotechnology became so advanced that it could do nearly anything to a person even at the genetic level. New hair color? No problem. Longer life? Done. Special “powers”? Sure.

What if the government could track our incapacitate anyone remotely thanks to this nanotechnology? In the scenario detailed in this short film, the government has decided to repeal the 2nd Amendment since there’s apparently no need for an armed citizenry in such a society.

For the rest, you’ll just have to watch the video. It’s 14 minutes yet terrifying nonetheless.

The combination of advancing technologies and authoritarianism in Washington DC could make for a truly horrifying future if we’re not careful. When they say something is being done to improve the collective, be skeptical.

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