JFK, UFOs, Pac-12 refs... how about NBA officials?
The Kennedy theories is something that will probably never die.
Wasn't there documents that were to be released 50 yrs after?
I once lived next to a retired bodyguard that supossely was involved in guarding the President during the bay of pigs back in 1961/He was quite emphatic about one brabch being vocal about not liking what was happening, and not wanting "us" to be there
I understand sports conspericies , talk show hosts need and love it, increases ratings, same with politics
my team lost
Read 11/22/63 by Steven King best book about the assasinaion
A very nice read John...I've been officiating High School Football for 40 years and I've heard all the hoots and screams from fans and parents alike and I say to them come out and help us get better as you appear to have all the rules and game situations down cold and you'd better a natural fit....just say'in
2 entities that you most certainly do not want to tick off, are the CIA and the Chicago mob.
No air support at The Bay of Pigs. Andy Bobby going after mob guys who were partners with his old man running scotch, etc. over the Canadian border during Prohibition.
But Oswald tried to kill a federal judge before he shot at Kennedy. So perhaps he did act alone.
After decades, I think this speculation should disappear. But I doubt this will happen.
Stone's movie was so over the top it may have hit the Moon if astronauts did not.
At least "my" Celtics gave it a try. The Bruins folded like a cardboard suitcase.
Thanks for another great take, John.
I certainly don't think there's any pre-planned conspiracy before a game by officials or leagues, but anyone who doesn't think a referee or umpire's call can be influenced by a coach or manager during a game is naive. They're human...and can be intimidated or have favorites. It's part of sports.
Organized crime worldwide influence professional sports with bribes. That is a fact. Kennedy was killed by more than one shooter. That is a fact.
You put your finger on it, John. As did Scott. Some people would rather believe that their team or political figure lost, not because they were inferior to the other team or political opponent, but that someone with power, life a ref, wanted the other side to win. One of the main needs that humans have it feeling safe, and life being predictable, but there is a great deal of uncertainty in life.
But, although I am politically liberal and love talking about politics, I think that we should be dealing with sports, not politics.
Really good stuff, thank you for a fascinating read.
I participated in a number of Major League Umpire schools where Dale Scott was an instructor. Great guy, lots of fun and fine teacher. He's absolutely right in his answer to your question -why he thinks sports fans (and the public) enjoy bringing this kind of conspiracy stuff up. He's correct. However (there's always a "however" or "but"), let me add some reality that unfortunately adds credence to these theories: Arizona State point shaving vs. Oregon State in 1994 was the tipoff that alerted authorities and began the investigation that unearthed a huge point shaving scandal. There have been at least 20 other college basketball point shaving scandals since the 1950s. O.K., that's college, we're talking about the Celtics and Heat, not college. O.K., in 2007, Tim Donaghy, NBA referee, pleaded guilty to charges of betting on games he refereed in 2005-6 and 2006-7 seasons. This included his betting on games where his actions changed outcomes...including the NBA playoffs. Oh, more? How about Tim Peel, a longtime NHL referee caught on a hot mic saying he "...it wasn't much but I wanted to call a f*****g penalty on Nashville early"? Why? Who knows, but the NHL wasn't amused, and the guy was canned immediately. I could go on. Horse racing is notoriously shady - look what just happened to Bob Baffert, the winningest trainer in the sport recently. Baseball itself is not pure in this regard - Pete Rose is exhibit A.
So, my point is this - yeah, fans and the public can go completely overboard on the conspiracy theories - it happens a lot. However, the athletes and officials have provided plenty of sordid factual examples that make fans' collective imaginations run wild...it's not all bong pipes and hallucinations by the fans and public.
I would like to read the results of interviews with refs about whether they feel home venues have impact? Does anyone have the statistics on the number of fouls called on Arizona in Tucson when Lute Olson was coach, vs when the Cats were on the road? I seem to remember some pretty maddening foul differentials between UA and visitors in Tucson.
JFK wanted to dismantle the CIA, and he was killed to prevent that. JFK fired Dulles as CIA Chief following Bay of Pigs event. Also fired by JFK was CIA #2, Charles Cabell, who hated JFK. Charles brother, Earle Cabell, was mayor of Dallas at time. Earle responsible for no secret service in the Limo, behind Jackie & JFK. The Federal courthouse in Dallas now named after him. LBJ capstone was assigning Dulles as member of the Warren Commission, to investigate JFK murder.
So many unanswered questions about JFK's assassination. I remember that day very well. I was 13, old enough to think about it and try to find context.
The Kennedy assassination is as relevant today as the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand was when we were kids. It scarred our parents and gave them a universal piece of small talk that endures to this day. "Where were you when you heard?" Ask anyone over the age of 70, and they can tell you where they were and the color of their shoelaces. 2/3 of Congress can tell you all about it. But to anyone 35 or under, it's yet another topic old people love to drone on about. Watching the towers fall on 9/11 in first grade and spending the next decade performing regular active-shooter drills instead of thinking about recess tends to focus the mind elsewhere.
As for the event itself, it has a lot more in common with Jan 6 than anything else. There's an excellent book out there called 'Dallas 1963' by Bill Minutaglio, Steven L. Davis that goes into pretty good detail about the political fever swamp that was Dallas that year. Just as they did in the days and weeks after Jan 6, the right-wingers in media and political office ran away as quickly as they could from the very thing they stoked.
Oswald did it. He acted "alone" but certainly had a bunch of encouragement. Same as James Earl Ray. Same as Timothy McVeigh. Same as Eric Rudolph. Same as Scott Roeder. And on. And on. And on.
It was LBJ's men...nobody had more to gain!
My common-sense take: Lee Harvey Oswald did not and could not have acted alone; Freemasons did not sink the Titanic; NASA did not fake the moon landing; Aliens are real but are not living among us - yet; Pac-12 officials or refs from other leagues, college or pro, are not plotting for/against ANY team, unless they are in debt to or fearing for their life because of gambling. On this last point, I think the proliferation and normalization of gambling on sports and everything else is a troubling development. But, I could be wrong. I was once.
well said, Dale - blasting professional and college officials certainly doesn't help with the shortage of youth officials in Oregon and across the nation. I've even seen social media disparage high school and middle school officials!
Remember, there are no bad or good calls - just correct and incorrect. :)
Another interesting column. Thanks for writing it.
I’m almost always thinking about conspiracies any time my team loses. But the historical record, unfortunately, usually tells a different story. And that means I must bite the old bullet and accept the unsavory truth. My team just lost.