Hail Mary: NFL Players and Coaches Sacrificed During WWII

H/T War History OnLine.

This is a war-time sports story that needs to be told and retold.

In 1992 the movie A League of Their Own about the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League opened in theaters around the United States. The film was a fictionalized account of the formation of the league and its players and was a big hit.

The league was the idea of Philip K. Wrigley, of Wrigley Field fame, as a way to keep baseball in the public eye while many of the sport’s star male players, such as Joltin’ Joe DiMaggio, Ted Williams, and others were serving in the military.

Though men’s baseball did continue during the war, the women’s league was a way to keep people interested in the sport until the time came when men’s baseball became more competitive again. The women’s league was actually more successful than many imagined, at least for a time – it ended in 1954.

Philip K. Wrigley in 1917

 

All American Girls Professional Baseball League player Marg Callaghan sliding into home plate as umpire Norris Ward watches.1948

What many people today don’t know is that professional football went through many of the same trials and tribulations that baseball did during the war years. Making matters even worse for the owners and fans of the sport was the fact that even in the 1940s, professional football was not as popular as its college counterpart.

Even though the professional version had grown in popularity in the 1930s, college football still brought in larger crowds and more attention.

Adding to the wartime troubles for football was the fact that college football remained somewhat unaffected, as the players were mostly younger or exempt (at least temporarily) from the military draft. That meant that star college players kept playing, but star professional players found themselves in uniform.

Contemporary Maryland quarterback Tommy Mont shakes hands with William W. Skinner, University of Maryland faculty member and quarterback from the school’s inaugural 1892 football team.

To keep people interested in the game, the National Football League (NFL) came up with sort of a gimmick, much like their baseball counterparts – they re-signed older, retired stars. The most famous of the returning players was Bronko Nagurski, who had played for the Chicago Bears and had retired in 1937. Nagurski, who became famous in college and the pros as a fullback, returned to football as a tackle.

Other (future) Hall of Famers included Green Bay quarterback Arnie Herber, who had retired in 1940, and halfback Ken Strong. Herber signed with the New York Giants and Strong returned to that team.

One of the Sports Facts newspaper of April 25, 1950 with photos of Bronko Nagurski.

Teams as a whole went through hard times because of the war. The Cleveland Browns suspended play for 1943. Many people would be surprised to hear that the two Pennsylvania teams, the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Philadelphia Eagles, actually merged for 1943, and played in both cities. People dubbed the team “the Steagles.”

The “Steagles” only lasted one year, but in 1944 Pittsburgh combined with another struggling team, the Chicago Cardinals. The official name of this team was the catchy “Card-Pitt Combine” and they were so bad they went winless that year. Opposing teams ran over them so much that sportswriters and fans began calling the team (sorry, “Combine”) “the Carpets.”

The year 1945 saw the end of the “Combine,” but two teams that do not exist anymore, the Boston Yanks and the Brooklyn Dodgers (yes, football “Dodgers”) merged at that time and played as the “Yanks,” but left a city tag off the name.

1943 Steagles starting line-up

 

American footballer Tuffy Leemans.

During the war, a surprisingly large number of NFL players were killed overseas. Many of the players went into combat roles – their athletic prowess and toughness made it almost inevitable, and the death toll reflected that. Nineteen active or former players were killed in action, as was an ex-head coach and a team executive.

Of those NFL players killed in action, probably the best-known was Al Blozis, who played tackle for the New York Giants and had been “All-League” (the early NFL’s “All-Pro”). Blozis was 6’6” tall and weighed 250 lbs. Blozis was in the Army, and actually could have claimed exemption from front-line infantry duty because of his size and instead put into the artillery or a support branch, but he would not take the exemption.

During basic training, he set the Army record for a grenade throw – he had been a varsity shot-putter at Georgetown University. In the winter of 1944, just six weeks after playing in the 1944 NFL Championship Game, Blozis was killed by German machine-gun fire as he helped look for some missing men in the snow-covered Vosges Mountains of eastern France.

Al Blozis, Giants tackle, died in World War II. According to Mel Hein, “If he hadn’t been killed, he could have been the greatest tackle who ever played football.”

Three men who had played in the NFL or pro football or later had connections to it were awarded the Medal of Honor during the war, one of them posthumously.

The most famous of the three was fighter pilot Joe Foss, who was the leading Marine ace of WWII with 26 victories. He later was commissioner of the AFL from 1960-66 as well as being governor of South Dakota.

Joseph Jacob Foss wearing the highly prized Medal of Honor bestowed upon him by President Roosevelt for outstanding gallantry against the Japanese in the Solomons.

Maurice Britt briefly played end for the Detroit Lions before the war. He fought in North Africa and Italy and was the first man in WWII to be awarded all four of the top medals of valor: the Medal of Honor, the Distinguished Service Cross, Silver Star, and Bronze Star. He also received four Purple Hearts. Football was easy compared to all that.

Andrew Jackson “Jack” Lummus played with the 1941 New York Giants and received the Medal of Honor for actions taken during the Battle of Iwo Jima in 1945. He destroyed many Japanese positions single-handedly, despite being wounded multiple times, before being killed by a land-mine.

Jack Lummus, USMC, Medal of Honor recipient; Battle of Iwo Jima

Perhaps the most famous of them all, at least in regard to football, was legendary Dallas Cowboys coach Tom Landry. At 19, he enlisted in the Army Air Corps and flew 30 missions in a B-17 over occupied Europe, surviving a crash in Belgium on his way back from bombing a German armaments plant in Czechoslovakia. He was on the real “America’s Team” long before he coached the other one.

Activist Court Turns the Law Designed to Protect the Firearm Industry from Frivolous Lawsuits on its Head

H/T NRA-ILA.

This ruling from the Connecticut Supreme Court will not pass judicial review and this ruling will be overturned all with any lawsuits that come up as a result of this ruling.

On Thursday, the Connecticut Supreme Court created a dangerous new exception to the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA), a strong safeguard for our right to keep and bear arms.

Repealing or judicially nullifying the PLCAA has been a priority for the gun ban lobby ever since the law was enacted in 2005. Thursday’s decision, while not binding beyond Connecticut, provides a possible roadmap for those hoping to circumvent the PLCAA’s protections against frivolous and untested legal claims against the firearm industry.

The case is Soto v. Bushmaster.

The PLCAA was enacted to protect the firearms industry against a highly-orchestrated and coordinated series of lawsuits that sought to either bankrupt the industry or force it to “voluntarily” adopt the sorts of measures gun control activists had unsuccessfully sought to impose by legislation.

While anti-gunners like to portray the PLCAA as providing “extraordinary” or “unparalleled” legal protection to gun makers and sellers, in reality it simply ensures that activist courts cannot create a firearm-specific exemption to well established principles of law. The most important of these is, as the Connecticut Supreme Court put it, “the general rule that an individual cannot be held liable for the conduct of others.”

Gun control activists, however, have long sought to hold firearm manufacturers and sellers accountable for the crimes of third-parties who obtain and illegally use the guns they sell. The theory would be similar to the victim of a drunk driver suing the manufacturer or dealer of the vehicle the driver happened to be operating at time.

This theory is unsurprisingly almost always a legal loser, absent unusual circumstances demonstrating a link between the merchant and the criminal or specific warning signs the merchant was aware of but chose to ignore when selling the gun to the person who later misused it.

Nevertheless, winning the cases was never really the point. The point was instead to get enough litigants in different jurisdictions to gang up on the manufacturers so that they would go out of business or give up defending the lawsuits before the cases ever got before a jury.

The PLCAA put an end to this, while still allowing for liability for those who knowingly engage in bad conduct. For example, it contains exceptions for marketing a defective product, entrusting a firearm or ammunition to someone unfit to have it, or breaking a law “applicable to the sale or marketing of the [firearm or ammunition],” and thereby causing the plaintiff’s injuries.

The plaintiffs in Soto v. Bushmaster are survivors and representatives of those killed in the terrible murders at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Conn. in 2012.

They advanced a variety of legal theories as to why the PLCAA did not apply to their claims.

A trial judge dismissed all of these claims in an October 2016 ruling, which we reported on at the time.

The plaintiffs then appealed to the Connecticut Supreme Court, which in a closely divided 4 to 3 ruling, found a pathway for the case to proceed.

The high court’s majority opinion focused on the exception for the violation of laws “applicable to the sale or marketing of the [firearm or ammunition]” that result in the plaintiff’s injuries.

In so doing, it had to resolve the question of whether that exception applies only to gun specific laws (like the ones used as examples in the act itself) or whether it could apply to any law that might conceivably be invoked against the manufacture or sale of a firearm or ammunition.

The court chose the broadest reading of that language, finding that it applied to any law used to bring a case against a firearm manufacturer or seller, whether or not that law was enacted with firearms in mind or even whether or not it had previously been used in the context of a firearm related claim.

The law the plaintiffs invoked was the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act (CUTPA), which prohibits any person from “engag[ing] in unfair methods of competition and unfair or deceptive acts or practices in the conduct of any trade or commerce.”

The plaintiffs advanced two theories as to how this applied to the defendants’ behavior.

First, they asserted that any sale of an AR-15 to the civilian population was necessarily a fraudulent commercial practice, because (so they claimed) such firearms have no legitimate civilian use.

Never mind the fact that the AR-15 is, by all accounts, the most popular centerfire rifle in America, that it is owned by millions of law-abiding people who use it for every legitimate purpose for which a gun can be used.

It is also notable with respect to this claim that Congress enacted the PLCAA the year after it allowed the Clinton Gun Ban to expire in 2004. Congress was well aware that gun control advocates hate AR-15s and similar guns and want them permanently banned, but it did not exempt them from the PLCAA’s protection. Indeed, an important principle underlying the PLCAA is that the legislatures get to determine how to regulate firearms, not the courts.

The Connecticut Supreme Court, however, did not decide whether the sales and marketing of AR-15s to the general public is inherently fraudulent, finding only that the statute of limitations had expired on that particular claim. But the court at least left the door open for future such claims in other cases.

The second CUTPA theory the plaintiffs advanced was the outrageous accusation that Bushmaster intentionally marketed its version of the AR-15 to school shooters and other violent criminals and that the perpetrator of the Newtown crimes choose to use that gun at least in part because of this.

The supposed evidence the plaintiffs used for this claim was Remington ad copy that used militaristic images and language, appeals to patriotism, references to the gun’s use and proofing in combat.

These are, of course, the same advertising techniques used to sell any number of other lawful products to law-abiding people, from pants, to sunglasses, to boots, to vehicles.  The fact that a customer might appreciate knowing that an item – especially one for use in protecting his or her home and loved ones – performed well under demanding circumstances is hardly proof that it is purposely being marketed to deranged killers.

But that premise was enough for the Connecticut Supreme Court to require the defendants in the case to spend millions of dollars defending themselves from what is certain to be prolonged and costly litigation that publicly portrays the companies and their products in the most negative ways possible.

This was so, even though the majority acknowledged CUTPA had never been used to bring a firearm-related case in Connecticut and indeed had never even been applied to a personal injury case.

And if there was any remaining doubt about where the majority stood on the issue of AR-15s, they also included a totally unnecessary commentary suggesting the limits of the Second Amendment, which wasn’t even raised as an issue in the case. In particular, the court opined, “It is not at all clear … the second amendment’s protections even extend to the types of … rifles at issue in the present case.”

To their credit, three judges dissented from the majority opinion as it applied to the ability to use CUTPA to circumvent the PLCAA, even as they indicated their own disagreement with the choices Congress made with the Act.  “It is not the province of this court, under the guise of statutory interpretation, to legislate a particular policy, even if it were to agree that it is a better policy than the one endorsed by the legislature as reflected in its statutory language,” the Chief Judge wrote in his dissent.

With the viability of the PLCAA now in jeopardy, it is likely the defendants will appeal the case to the U.S. Supreme Court. Whether any intervention comes quickly enough to save the gun industry from a renewed campaign of frivolous litigation remains to be seen.

Piers Morgan BLASTS Beto: ‘Beto O’Rourke Is A Deluded LOSER Running On A Ticket Of LIES’

H/T Clash Daily.

Piers Morgan does a brutal smackdown of Robert Francis O’Rourke.

President Trump will have fun at this clowns expense.

And ‘loser’ was just his opening salvo.

When Piers Morgan is on point, he is nothing short of brutal.

And in his breakdown of the announcement of the very white Robert O’Rourke who culturally appropriated the nickname ‘Beto’ to seem more multicultural, Piers was absolutely savage.

Here are some of the highlights.

He lost, and however close it may have been, that makes him a loser. And yet, he’s here announcing his run for the presidency.

And he did so in rather unconventional fashion – by announcing the end of the world is fast upon us.

As US presidential campaign messages go, it at least had the benefit of being uniquely depressing.

O’Rourke didn’t quite scream ‘WE’RE ALL GONNA DIE!’ but he might as well have done.

In direct contrast to Donald Trump’s upbeat winning 2016 slogan of ‘Make America Great Again’, O’Rourke thinks he can win in 2020 by telling 320 million Americans they’re all doomed.

‘We face catastrophe and crisis on this planet,’ he declared, asserting that climate change will unleash ‘massive migration of tens or hundreds of millions of people from countries that are literally uninhabitable or under water.’

He’s not even promising to stop it.

‘Life is going to be a lot tougher for the generations that follow us,’ he said, ‘no matter what we do.’

Right.

Well that should galvanise everyone into a frenzy of optimism and excitement!
Source: DailyMail

He was just getting started. For reference, here’s the anouncement video if you missed it.

There’s also the small matter of Mr O’Rourke’s staggering hypocrisy on the very issue of climate change.

For his Texas election campaign, he signed up to a No Fossil Fuel Money Pledge that declared he wouldn’t line his pockets with big cash donations from the oil, gas and coal barons.

Then it later emerged he’d accepted $476,325 in such donations.

Indeed, O’Rourke took so much that his name was humiliatingly removed from the No Fossil Fuel Money Pledge.

So he not only broke a major campaign promise, but he also exposed himself as someone who preaches about saving the planet but greases his political palms with money from stuff that destroys the planet.
Source: DailyMail

But wait… there’s more…

Two weeks ago he said the entire existing southern border security fencing – all 700 miles of it – should be removed because the dangers from refugees, asylum seekers and illegal immigrants were being massively exaggerated.

Yet today, as he announced his intention to run for President, O’Rourke gravely warned of millions of people fleeing to countries like America from places ravaged by climate change.

You don’t have to be a Trump ‘Wall’ fan to realise there is a slight contradiction here: if America’s border is about to face such apocalyptic pressure, why on earth would you propose removing all security along it?
Source: DailyMail

There’s also a large whiff of ‘fraud’ about this new ‘Man of the People’.

He calls himself Beto, to appeal to the Hispanic community, but his actual name is Robert.

He sells himself as just a regular guy, yet he’s actually stinking rich – thanks mainly to his wife who is the daughter of a real estate tycoon worth $500 million.

And while he professes to be an ‘outsider’, on the very day O’Rourke announced his candidacy, the new issue of Vanity Fair, the world’s most elite celebrity magazine, came out with a glowing cover story on him boasting the supremely immodest headline about his decision to run: ‘Man, I’m just born to be in it…’

He certainly puts the vanity into Vanity Fair!

Of course, having flair, charisma and good looks are not bad things for a presidential candidate.

But they have to be backed up by substance, and that is where O’Rourke looks most dubious.

He talks a good game but rarely specifies how he would actually walk it, prompting justified criticism that he’s big on rhetoric, small on substance.
Source: DailyMail

If a columnist from the UK can rip him to shreds like this, is he really ready to face the ruthless knives of some bloodthirsty rivals who have convinced themselves they’ve got what it takes to be the Next Democrat President?

How long before we hear the announcer call out…

‘It’s all over!’

In the meantime, maybe it’s time to start writing his name with a zero in it: ‘Bet-0’. Or if that’s too subtle for the fonts, maybe ‘Bet-zero’.

If he’s going to BE pretentious, let’s have it remind people just HOW pretentious he really is.

British MP Thinks All Knives Should Have GPS Trackers To Combat Crime

H/T Bearing Arms.

This GPS idea will work as good as the British gun control.

I can’t tell you how many British people I’ve had try to lecture me over the superiority of gun control laws in the UK. They say over and over that they don’t have gun crime which proves gun control works.

But they typically leave out that their knife crime rate shot through the damn roof.

Now, one enterprising Member of Parliament has a plan. A bold, revolutionary plan! One that even Wiley Coyote might approve!

Yeah, it is that bad.

All knives sold in the United Kingdom should have a GPS tracker attached to them, according to a Conservative MP.

Scott Mann, who represents North Cornwall, called for the move on Thursday as a potential means to reduce knife crime.

Writing on Twitter, Mr Mann said: “Every knife sold in the UK should have a gps tracker fitted in the handle. It’s time we had a national database like we do with guns.

“If you’re carrying it around you had better have a bloody good explanation, obvious exemptions for fishing etc.”

The MP’s suggestion was largely met with disdain by those who read it, with many highlighting simply how many knives it would mean fitting such devices to.

One person shared an image of their kitchen drawer and said it alone would require 27 GPS devices inside it for all the knives to be tracked.

Another said: “I don’t think the main problem with stabbings is not knowing where the knife is.”

This is the society that the sun once never set on? Oh, how the mighty have fallen.

The problem with knife crime is that the UK government has made it its mission to neuter its population. They’ve taken away any means the people have to defend themselves, thus making it a playground for every criminal and thug in the country. There’s no concern about being meeting armed resistance, so they can be as brazen as they want.

Hell, this is a country that is hesitant to trust their police with guns. That means armed criminals don’t even have to worry about law enforcement stepping in to stop them if they decide they want to hurt someone, for crying out loud.

And this doorknob’s suggestion is to slap a GPS tracker into the handle of every knife in the country?

First, 1984 was a warning, not an instruction manual. Seeking to know where people’s personal property is on any given moment is the surveillance state at its finest.

Second, do you honestly think criminals aren’t going to disable the trackers and carry their knives as they wish?

Honestly, British folks, how does a complete and total moron like this get into Parlament? I mean, I know your elections work differently than ours, where you tend to vote for a party and not a person, but still…how? How does this happen to a developed, Western nation? If this were some third-world nation, I’d figure bribery, but in the UK?

If there’s a saving grace to this, it was that Mann was savaged on social media, showing that while the British people may be cowed, they’re not that cowed.

Ilhan Omar supporter CONFRONTS Sarah Sanders, Gets Owned Instantly

Jim Campbell's

Comment by Jim Campbell

March 16, 2019

The lefties in the White House Press corps just have no clue when to leave well enough alone.

Sara Sanders is to rookie.

 

Rookie: Needs to learn before she speaks.

She took a real whipping at the usually fun press correspondents meeting last year as they picked on everything from her veracity to her weight.

 

 

As they badger Ms. Sanders, she politely designates their tepid asides.

Move right along in this video to the 14.11 part.

Wolf is in articulate, she says nothing of consequence and that’s where she decided to take on Sara Sanders who to her flogging with grace and charm.

 

Michell Wolf was funny but her personal attacks on Sara Sanders was unwarranted.

 

 

Seriously, Sara if frequently called upon to be the presidents human shit shield as he continues twittering his off the cuff…

View original post 34 more words

Pelosi: I’ve ‘Always Been for Lowering the Voting Age to 16’

H/T The Washington Free Beacon.

I say “Hell No!” to allowing a sixteen-year-old vote.

There are eighteen-year-olds that I know that do not belong in a voting booth.

 

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) on Thursday said she has “always been for lowering the voting age to 16.”

Pelosi was asked by a reporter at her weekly press briefing whether she believed the issue of lowering the national voting age to 16 years old would gain traction in Congress. The issue came up for debate in the House last week as an amendment to the “For The People Act,” which is also called H.R. 1.

Pelosi suggested it was important to get high schoolers involved in civics when they’re a captive audience.

“I myself, personally, not speaking for my caucus, I myself have always been for lowering the voting age to 16,” Pelosi said.  “I think it’s really important to capture kids when they’re in high school, when they’re interested in all of this, when they’re learning about government.”

“Some of the priorities in this bill are about transparency, openness, and accessibility, and the rest,” she continued. “[Lowering the voting age] is a subject of debate, and I would welcome it, but I’ve been in that position for a long time.”

H.R. 1 passed the House through its Democratic majority, despite opposition from the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). The amendment to lower the voting age from 18 to 16, however, failed to pass the House in a 126-305 vote last week. Freshman Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D., Mass.) introduced the amendment.

 

Florida Law Would Make It Illegal For Minors To Post Pictures Of Fake Guns

H/T AmmoLand.

Only in Floriduh.

Tallahassee, Florida –-(Ammoland.com)- A New Florida bill proposed by, you guessed it, a Democrat would make it against the law for a minor to post a picture of anything resembling a gun on Social Media.

Florida Democrat Jason W. B. Pizzo
Florida Democrat Jason W. B. Pizzo

Democrat Jason W. B. Pizzo introduced SB 1310 into the Florida Senate. The bill would make it illegal for anyone under 18 to post a picture on the internet of a firearm, BB gun, airsoft gun, or any other device that resembles a gun. This law would also apply to realistic toy guns.

The Miami-Dade Democrat’s law would charge the minor with a misdemeanor. The fines can be up to $1000 per violation. In addition to the fine, authorities could also jail the minor for up to one year if convicted of violating the proposed anti-free-speech law.

The law would also require the parents of the minor to attend parenting classes for reprograming. On the second violation, the parents could be forced to do community service in addition to further courses. The bill does not make it clear who would hold these classes or what they would teach the parents.

This law would make it illegal for minors to share pictures of them hunting with their parent. It is a tradition for parents to take photos of their children with their first kill with the gun that they used to harvest the animal. This activity would now become illegal.

If the minor takes a picture at the range with their parent while learning about gun safety, say at the Boy Scouts or 4H, that would also become illegal.

The law would not make it illegal for the child to take a gun safety course or even stop the kid from using a firearm. The law only deals with the posting of pictures to social media.

Even crazier is if a minor post a picture of an Airsoft game they are guilty of a crime and the courts could send the juvenile to jail. Airsoft is a game similar to paintball, but players use plastic BBs instead of paintballs. Since the fake guns that players use in the game look similar to real guns, it would be a crime for a minor to post pictures of their sport of choice.

Toy Gun Play
The law would also require the parents of the minor to attend parenting classes for reprograming. On the second violation, the parents could be forced to do community service.

The minor doesn’t even have to be holding a gun or even in the picture with the firearm to violate the proposed law. Just the act of posting the image would be illegal. If a child went into a hobby shop and took a picture of an Airsoft gun, they would be subject to arrest.

The bill also gives the police the right to conduct a warrantless arrest when they suspect a minor has violated any part of the law.

Maj Toure of Black Guns Matter sees the law as a tool to unfairly target youth. He think it is a violation of the Constitution.

“This legislation is Orwellian to say the LEAST and of course this will lead directly to false claims of ‘probably cause’ in poor, urban communities,” Toure said.”This type of legislation is not only unconstitutional in regard to its DIRECT violation of the fourth amendment, but it is also a violation of young people right to express themselves.”

“What if this young person wants to pursue a career as a gun smith? Or go to the Olympics for shooting? We are now telling teens that PICTURES must be censored and thoughts of self-defense and shooting sports are wrong, both of which do NOTHING to make Americans safer. Complete clown shit by Florida Democrat Senator Pizzo. Voters in Florida should have him removed when it’s time to do so for this over reach and political grand standing.”

This proposed law is the first of its kind in the country and might also violate the First Amendment. When asked about the First Amendment issues that would be facing the bill legislative assistants for Senator Pizzo, Linda Kraft stated that there would be an amendment to the proposed law to clear that up.

“There is an amendment that will make the bill a little clearer,” Kraft told AmmoLand News. “He isn’t trying to stop legal activities.”

Kraft stated that we would have to wait a little longer to find out what that amendment will say. The Senator was not available to speak with AmmoLand.

The Florida Senate has referred the law to the Judiciary and Criminal Justice Committees for review. Republicans hold a slim margin in the Senate, so we encourage all Florida residents to contact their Senator.

Readers in Florida can locate their Senator by using the Florida Senate website at https://www.flsenate.gov/Senators/Find