Sunday Letters: Sportsmanship lost in contested football game

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Plainfield North’s Tigers celebrate their 18-17 victory over Fenwick on Nov. 19 during the IHSA Class 7A semifinals at Triton College in River Grove. (Photo by Larry W. Kane for Shaw Media)

The Nov.  23 editorial regarding the Plainfield North High School and Fenwick controversy that opines that high school sports are all about sportsmanship is naive. The lesson learned from the Plainfield North coaches is that winning is what is important.

It is obvious that the ignorance of the written rules by the entire referee crew resulted in a frustrating, tainted and embarrassing result.

If sportsmanship was relevant, Plainfield would not have accepted the victory resulting from the  referees’ ignorance. With all the publicity surrounding the incident, a rejection of the wrong result could have demonstrated that high school sports do teach sportsmanship. It is obvious that the take-away from this controversy is do not turn down a win because sportsmanship is irrelevant.

Fred Heiss, River Forest

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Cupich’s agenda

Cardinal Blase Cupich merits our applause. The two most important societal matters that he can hope to influence are the following:

One, to help to achieve a significant return to the intact family as we have known it, meaning two effective, on-duty parents in the home. Two, to encourage people to make a committed connection to an organized belief system or religion.

If he can use his considerable influence and fine humanitarian skills to affect any of the above, our challenged city will reap benefits for which it will be indebted.

Congratulations, and best wishes to you, Cardinal Cupich.

Leon J. Hoffman, Lake View

I don’t understand

Analysts, politicians, and every day citizens try to explain and to understand the reasons for the election of Donald Trump. Some say dissatisfaction arising from the loss of manufacturing jobs, appointments to the Supreme Court, taxes, undocumented immigrants, dislike of Hillary Clinton, etc., led to his Electoral College victory. While efforts to understand are important for some, I fail to comprehend how Trump voters cast their ballots for a candidate who made racist comments, displayed sexual predatory behavior, insulted women and a Gold Star family, mocked the disabled, and lied repeatedly? No justification exists that could overcome Donald Trump’s many significant flaws.

If the situation were reversed and a Democrat made the statements that Donald Trump did, I would have put country before party by either not voting for president or voting for the opposition, third party included.

Lorraine Kucienski Serwatka, Ravenswood Manor

Excellent column

An excellent November 23 “Outdoors” column implored Gov. Bruce Rauner not to eliminate the jobs of direly needed Conservation Police Officers. They are very important employees who protect wildlife, imperiled species, parks, nature habitats and humans who visit to appreciate nature. Conservation police officers also deter poachers and those who illegally hunt. It’s very important for Illinois to be a State that respects the environment and the creatures that coexist with us.

Brien Comerford, Glenview

Bad choices

Ever since the election of a man who did not receive the majority of the popular vote and thus actually lost the election — if we did not insist on clinging to the antiquated 18th century concept of the electoral college — the process of the normalization of Trump’s most racist policies and Cabinet choices has taken place through various forms of media.

We are presented daily with a parade of fringe alt-right yahoos as potential decision-makers for a nation desperately in need of real wisdom and not climate deniers and promoters of hatred. These Trump choices are presented as perfectly rational yet they would fail a thorough vetting that any corporation would do in a similar situation.The anti-intellectualism of the new administration will prove to be the downfall of our nation and will destroy our children’s future.

Edward Juillard, Morgan Park

Russian influence

As Russia continues its military interventions in Ukraine and Syria, and beefs up its military presence around the Baltics, an oft-ignored Caucasus, bordering NATO-member Turkey, is falling under Moscow’s influence.

Russia has been consistently expanding its presence in its proxy state of Armenia. Armenia’s been Moscow’s staunch ally and hosted its 102nd military base near its border with NATO-member Turkey. With Russia’s military support Armenia also sustains its occupation of Nagorno Karabakh region of our ally Azerbaijan. While Azerbaijan has for many years provided a vital corridor to US troops through southern route of the Northern Distribution Network (NDN) by opening its territory and air space to NATO, Armenia has received subsidized arms deals from Moscow. This year, it received a $200-million arms equipment loan from Moscow to buy hypersonic Iskander-M (SS-26 Stone) ballistic missiles which can hit oil and gas infrastructure within Azerbaijan where Western companies operate.

This November, Putin also sanctioned creation of Russo-Armenian joint force which will expand Russian military presence in Armenia and put America’s allies Turkey, Georgia and Azerbaijan at risk. This can be interpreted as nothing but confronting the US national interests and NATO allies through Moscow’s proxies.

Armenian embassy and lobbying groups are to appear on Capitol Hill on Dec. 6 bringing representatives of separatist regime they had installed in occupied Nagorno Karabakh. Pretending to celebrate “freedom” they are in fact celebrating Russian-Armenian military expansion in Caucasus.

As Americans, we must decry any cooperation with Armenian separatists who come to Washington. I call on my elected officials to refrain from attending this bogus event, and from any contact with separatists who act in concert with Kremlin to harm US interests in Europe and Middle East.

Ali Gasimov, Rolling Meadows

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