Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

March 20, 2013

ROOT: Setting the record straight

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — Lately, I have had a lot of people asking me what I will be writing about from week to week and the honest answer is that I never know until I sit down in front of the computer. Thanks to my horrible memory, and the fact that I write these things right before I go to bed, I am often just as surprised as you guys are with what I write.

This week, I thought I would dedicate a little time to trying to help out the people on Facebook who seem to be relatively clueless. One does not get a full appreciation of just how deficient in common sense this country is until the country gets a public place to post its opinions. Most people are beyond saving, and for that I weep softly for them. But there is a select group of people who look like they are making honest mistakes and just need a little guidance. I am hoping to make this into a monthly thing because, when it comes to material for a smart aleck like me, Facebook is a treasure trove.

THE STATEMENT ON FACEBOOK: “Why should the tax payers have to foot the bill for renovations at Ralph Wilson Stadium when the stadium is just getting torn down for a new one?”

The correct answer: The renovations being planned at Ralph Wilson Stadium were part of the lease that was signed last year and approved by New York state, Erie County, the Bills and the NFL. The reason this is in the news again is because the NFL decided to finally announce its approval of the plans. This is nothing new and the money for this has already been set aside. And, no, the state is not going to raise your taxes to cover these renovations. While I agree that the tax payers should not have to pay for these renovations, this is not something new that the Bills just thought of and the state suddenly approved.

As for the “other” stadium, that is something completely different. The domed downtown stadium is just in the proposal phase right now and it is being completely financed by a group of rich guys that want to build the ultimate mancave. NO tax dollars will go into any aspect of the proposed new domed stadium. The Bills, Erie County and the NFL have absolutely no desire to build a new stadium in Buffalo and, as far as those entities are concerned, the new stadium proposal has nothing to do with the NFL or The Ralph. And it will not be a waterfront stadium filled with snow because, unless they collapse, dome stadiums do not fill with snow.

THE STATEMENT ON FACEBOOK: “Barack Obama should be impeached and every unconstitutional law on the books should be repealed. The congressional representatives who voted for those unconstitutional laws should all be arrested. Share if you agree.”

The correct answer: If you share this, then you should be ashamed of yourself. Barack Obama did not invent unconstitutional laws and he is certainly not the only president ever accused of creating questionable legislation. Repealing every unconstitutional law on the books would mean going back a lot further than the beginning of the Obama administration, which means that it may be difficult rounding up the congressional representatives who voted for those laws as well.

By the way, when people complain about the unconstitutional nature of something the president does, they are usually referring to things that the president did without the approval of congress. So, there’s that too.

THE STATEMENTS ON FACEBOOK: “Looks like the Sabres fired the wrong guy” and “The Sabres new coach is terrible too.”

The correct answer: Firing Lindy Ruff was an important first step in the rebuilding of the Sabres’ franchise. Interim head coach Ron Rolston was brought in from Rochester to finish out the season while the team looks for a new, permanent head coach. The team is still playing Lindy’s system, which would be obvious to anyone who watches the games.

The next logical steps in rebuilding the Sabres are firing Darcy Regier and releasing a series of players that Darcy has held onto. Until these next steps are taken, the team cannot move forward. The team didn’t fire the wrong guy, it has only done one part of a three part process.

THE STATEMENT ON FACEBOOK: “No one is taking my guns!”

The correct answer: You’re right; no one is trying to take your guns from you. There is nothing in the New York SAFE Act that says all citizens must surrender their guns. It does say that you will have to reapply for your gun permit every five years. If you have nothing to hide, then what’s the problem?

Maybe next month we can address the lack of punctuation, capitalization and proper sentence structure on Facebook.

Have a great week and keep on keepin’ on Ammmurrica!

George N Root III is an avid Facebook user who sometimes gets dizzy reading the Internet. His column appears every Wednesday and is easy to read because he uses punctuation, capitalization and proper sentence structure. He can be reached at georgeroot@verizon.net, unless you are Darcy Regier.