Tag Archives: Sports

First Lady Michelle Obama Launches President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition

Posted by: Audiegrl

Today, First Lady Michelle Obama joined kids from the Washington, DC area to launch the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition and introduce the 2010 Council co-chairs and members.  In conjunction with the First Lady’s Let’s Move! initiative, this year President Obama has broadened the scope of the Council, formerly known as the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports, to include a focus on healthy eating as well as active lifestyles.  Yesterday, the President signed an Executive Order outlining the Council’s new emphasis on both good nutrition and physical fitness.

The President has named Drew Brees, quarterback for the New Orleans Saints, and Dominique Dawes, three-time Olympian and former U.S. national champion in women’s gymnastics, 2010 Council Co-Chairs.  Dawes delivered remarks at the event and Brees recorded a video message that was shown there.  Joining Dawes at the event were 2010 Council Members Dan Barber, Tedy Bruschi, Allyson Felix, Michelle Kwan, Curtis Pride, Donna Richardson Joyner, Dr. Ian Smith, Carl Edwards, Cornell McClellan and Dr. Stephen McDonough.  Council Executive Director, Shellie Pfohl, was also in attendance. Following the announcement, the First Lady, Pfohl and the Council Members joined the kids in participating in a series of activity stations.

“This year we’re expanding the work of the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition to include not just a focus on active lifestyles, but on healthy eating, too,” Mrs. Obama said.  “The Council will play an important role in our effort to help combat childhood obesity in this country and I am grateful to the athletes, chefs, doctors and nutrition experts who are volunteering their time on the Council to help make a difference.”

The President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition is a committee of volunteer citizens who advise the President through the Secretary of Health and Human Services about opportunities to develop accessible, affordable and sustainable physical activity, fitness, sports and nutrition programs for all Americans regardless of age, background or ability.  The Council’s mission is to engage, educate and empower all Americans to adopt a healthy lifestyle that includes regular physical activity and good nutrition.  For more information about the Council and its members, visit www.fitness.gov.

In addition to its presidential advisory role, the Council promotes and maintains the President’s Challenge Physical Activity and Fitness Awards program (President’s Challenge) which encourages all Americans to include physical activity – 30 minutes per day for adults and 60 minutes per day for youth – in their daily lives.  For more information about the President’s Challenge programs, visit www.presidentschallenge.org.

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Filed under Childhood Obesity, Children, Education, First Lady Michelle Obama, Students

Los Suns Also Rise: Phoenix Suns Win in More Ways Than One

Posted by: BuellBoy

Written by Dave Ziran

Anyone who believes that sports can’t be an effective platform for social justice, needed only to watch last night’s game between Los Suns of Phoenix and the San Antonio Spurs. The unprecedented decision by the entire Suns organization – from owner Robert Sarver to star players Amare Stoudamire and Steve Nash – to wear uniforms blaring Los Suns and come out against Arizona’s anti-immigrant Senate Bill 1070, created a sports broadcast like no other in my lifetime. The game on TNT began with sideline reporter Marty Snider outside the arena covering a mushrooming 3,000 person civil rights march, led by Al Sharpton and Phoenix mayor Phil Gordon (both wearing Los Suns Jerseys.) Then the scene switched to the pre-game studio with host Ernie Johnson and former players Kenny “the Jet” Smith, Chris Webber, and Charles Barkley. The viewing audience then got an unexpected and bracing lesson in dissent.

Kenny Smith, like any good point guard, set up the others by saying, “I think it’s great that the team understands, the management understands and now the people of Phoenix are all rallying together at the same time.” Barkley, a long time Arizona resident and a man who once said that he was a Republican until “the Republicans lost their damn minds” chimed in saying, “The only people screwing it up are the politicians. The Governor – the interim governor I might add – J.D. Hayworth and John McCain. They’re the ones screwing this thing up. I really take my hat off to Robert Sarver and the Suns for taking a stand. You know, living in Arizona for a long time, the Hispanic community, they’re like the fabric of the cloth. They’re part of our community and any time you try to do any type of racial profiling or racial discrimination……. President Obama you’ve got to do something because these lightweight politicians in Arizona have no idea what they are doing.”

The typically blunt Barkley speaking in such terms is hardly surprising. But it was Chris Webber who upped the ante, interrupting a visibly uncomfortable Ernie Johnson with, “Public Enemy said it a long time ago. ‘By the Time I Get to Arizona.’ I’m not surprised. They didn’t even want there to be a Martin Luther King day when John McCain was in [office.]. So if you follow history you know that this is part of Arizona politics.”

It was a remarkable display and it was difficult to not think of the millions of television viewers around the country, in sports bars, restaurants, and house parties, being confronted with this kind of forthright, plainspoken language. But perhaps even more important than the support Los Suns received from protestors and broadcasters, was their play on the court. Phoenix trailed by nine at the end of the first quarter and Spurs star power forward Tim Duncan was scoring with ease. The crowd was dead and it wasn’t difficult to envision what would be said in the SportsWorld if Phoenix lost: “The political hoopla was a distraction.” “This is why sports and politics don’t mix.” “They should have been focused on the Spurs and not immigration.” And grinning smugly would have been LA Lakers coach Phil Jackson who chided the Suns yesterday saying, “If I heard it right the American people are really for stronger immigration laws…. I don’t think teams should get involved in the political stuff.”

In other words, everyone who stands with SB 1070 would be feeling a little more joyful this morning. It would have been an echo of the time Muhammad Ali lost his first fight to Joe Frazier and all the columnists and fans who wanted to see the draft dodging Ali punished, chortled gleefully after he was knocked to the canvas. But just when we were all ready to stick a fork in the brick-laying Suns, something remarkable happened. The slick shooting, fast breaking team started to crash the boards, play ugly, and do all the dirty work that wins games. Doughy, undersized three point shooter Jared Dudley started aggressively snatching offensive rebounds like his soul had been possessed by Barkley himself, energizing the crowd and shocking his team back to life. The result was a 110-102 victory in which the run and gun Suns were held to just eight fast break points. Coach Alvin Gentry said afterward that he had never seen the team play so mentally tough.

Maybe this will be the start of a new trend where teams see the unifying benefits of going out on a political limb and taking a stand. Maybe players across the sports leagues who oppose SB 1070 will be inspired to come together in a common organization and demand Arizona cease the imposition of “Juan Crow” on the Latino population. Maybe the major sports unions, all of whom have voiced opposition to the bill, will release a joint statement saying that they will support any player or team who boycotts the state as long as SB 1070 is on the books. Maybe this is all utterly unrealistic. But it seems a hell of a lot more possible this morning than it did last night. Vivan Los Suns.

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Dave Zirin is a sports correspondent for The Nation Magazine

Follow Dave Zirin on Twitter: www.twitter.com/edgeofsports

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Filed under Arizona, Basketball, Cinco de Mayo, Hispanic/Latino/Latina, Immigration, Sports, Uncategorized

Title IX: Giving Girls a Sporting Chance

Posted by: Audiegrl

Written by: Valarie Jarrett

Vice President Joe Biden delivers remarks on Title IX at George Washington University in Washington DC, April 20, 2010. Also present are Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett, and former intern Joy Cheek. (Official White House Photo by David Lienemann)

As Chair of the White House Council on Women and Girls, I was honored and excited to join world-class women athletes, the Vice President, and the Secretary of Education in a Title IX Announcement event Tuesday afternoon at George Washington University.

Title IX was enacted in 1972 and mandates that all educational institutions receiving federal funding create equal opportunities, for both boys and girls, in both academics and all other school activities. The announcement by Secretary of Education Arne Duncan enhances and strengthens the standards for Title IX compliance.

In the 38 years since enactment, we have seen how Title IX has helped women compete at all levels, producing real benefits for them later in life. For example, Title IX has been critical in improving the health of women and girls. New economic research has found that the increase in girls’ athletic participation caused by Title IX was associated with a seven percent lower risk of obesity for those girls 20 to 25 years later. No other public health program can claim similar success. Title IX has also contributed to improving the economic well-being of women and girls. A recent study by the Wharton Business School shows that being a high school athlete is associated with 14 percent higher wages for women. Learn more about Title IX and the strengthened standards by reading Assistant Secretary of Education for Civil Rights
Russlynn Ali’s blog post
.

At the event highlighting Title IX and women's athletics, girls participate in sports clinics with collegiate and professional athletes. (Photo by Joshua Hoover, U.S. Department of Education)

But there is perhaps no better evidence of the benefits of Title IX than seeing young girls interact with the WNBA players, the members of the Silver Medal-winning USA Women’s Olympic Hockey Team, and the many skilled collegiate athletes who participated in Tuesday’s event. These all-star women shot hoops and practiced their volleyball serves in clinics during the program, and in doing so, may have inspired the next great WNBA player or Olympian.

This event was not only a reminder as to why Title IX is important, but more broadly, it was a reminder as to why the Council’s work through the agencies remains relevant and continues to make a difference in the lives of women and girls.

Valerie Jarrett is a Senior Advisor to the President and Chair of the White House Council on Women and Girls

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Filed under Children, Obama Administration, Pres. Barack Obama, Secretary Arne Duncan (Sec of Education), Vice-President Joe Biden

Super Bowl 44

GEAUX SAINTS
Laissez les bons temps rouler

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Filed under CBS, Football, New Orleans, LA, Uncategorized

New Orleans Saints’ Drew Brees and President Obama Team Up for Children’s Fitness

Posted by Buellboy

Dallas Cowboys' DeMarcus Ware, President Barack Obama, Saints quarterback Drew Brees and Pittsburgh Steelers' Troy Polamalu with Washington, D.C.-area children at the White House. Brees said it was the only time he had thrown a pass to someone wearing a Chicago Bears jacket.

Times-Picayune—In support of his United We Serve initiative, President Barack Obama and NFL stars Drew Brees, DeMarcus Ware and Troy Polamalu team up to highlight the importance of fitness for America’s children.

Obama joins Saints quarterback Brees, Steelers safety Polamalu and Cowboys linebacker Ware in a special public service announcement debuting during each of the three NFL games played on Thanksgiving.

The 90-second PSA is a joint effort of the NFL’s PLAY 60 campaign, a league-wide effort to fight childhood obesity by getting kids active for 60 minutes a day, and United We Serve, the president’s initiative encouraging all Americans to participate in community service.

The spot will continue airing throughout the rest of the season in a shorter format.

Through United We Serve, I have challenged all Americans to roll up their sleeves and engage in sustained service to strengthen our communities,” the president said. “For some of us that means volunteering at a soup kitchen or cleaning up a local park. For others, it means taking time to build a playground or volunteering your time to improve the life of a child.

Quarterback Drew Brees

No matter how we serve, we find common purpose when we dedicate ourselves to helping others. This holiday season, I am asking all Americans to find their own way to give back to their communities.”

The Saints’ Brees, who has been a national spokesman for the PLAY 60 campaign for the past two years, said, “We had about 25 minutes and did three different takes. I threw him a couple of passes. He was wearing his Chicago Bears jacket, so there was some ribbing about that.

Thanksgiving is a time when families come together, and it is also a perfect time to focus on the importance of keeping kids healthy and active,” Brees said. “I was honored to spend time with the president on an issue that is clearly important to him. I was also impressed by his wide receiver skills.”

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Filed under Barack Obama, Change, Children, Football, Health, Media and Entertainment, New Orleans, LA, Politics, Pop Culture, Pres. Barack Obama, Presidents, PSA, Sports, Thanksgiving, Volunteerism

Laura Ricketts Is First Openly Gay Major League Baseball Owner

Posted by Audiegrl

LAURARICKETTS-largeHuffington Post/Tim Taliaferro—The Chicago Cubs have reached a baseball milestone and it has nothing to do with their century-plus World Series drought.

With the team’s purchase by the Ricketts Family, the Cubs are the first Major League Baseball team to have an openly gay owner.

Among the new owners is Laura Ricketts, an out lesbian who is also on the board of the gay rights organization Lambda Legal, the Windy City Times reports.

Ricketts, who is a member of the Cubs board of directors, came out to her family in her 30’s.

Chicago_cubs_2I think for a long time I wasn’t really out to myself growing up in Omaha, Neb., to a Catholic conservative family,” Ricketts said. “It took me a while to come out to myself and not long after that I came out to them. I think that it really couldn’t of been a better experience. They were all immediately supportive. … I have been really really fortunate in that regard.”

The Ricketts family bought the Cubs and Wrigley Field from the Tribune Co. for $845 million in a deal that was finalized Oct. 27.

More @ Huffington_Post_Logo

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Filed under Gay (LGBT) Rights, Sports, Women's Issues

Rio de Janeiro Wins 2016 Olympics Vote + Conservatives Revel In Obama’s Olympic Bid Failure

Party Time in Rio

Party Time in Rio

Rio wins 2016 Olympic Games in landslide over Madrid

story @


as predictable as the sun rising in the east….
**44-Update** “Conservatives Revel In Obama’s Failure”

conservatives-olympics-1002-cropped-proto-custom_1Just minutes after the news broke, RedState’s Erick Erickson took glee in Chicago – and, by extension, Obama’s – rejection.
“Hahahahaha,” he wrote. “I thought the world would love us more now that Bush was gone. I thought if we whored ourselves out to our enemies, great things would happen. Apparently not. So Obama’s pimped us to every two bit thug and dictator in the world, made promises to half the Olympic committee, and they did not even kiss him.”
Conservative commentator Michelle Malkin, meanwhile, wrote that the news effectively ended the Obama campaign motto of “Yes We Can” by dawning in a new slogan: “No, You Can’t.”
“This is a big win and a massive relief for taxpayers,” she wrote. “But Chicago cronies are not going to take this well. Gird your loins.”
The National Review Online called the episode an “embarrassment for Obama,” before adding the predictable conservative ribbing: “If he can’t work his personal magic with the Olympians, why does he expect it to work with the Iranians?”
The Drudge Report — topping them all — blared the headline: “THE EGO HAS LANDED
WORLD REJECTS OBAMA: CHICAGO OUT IN FIRST ROUND.”

more @: HuffPost

Posted by TheLCster
**44-Update**
COPENHAGEN DENMARK–

Shock in CHI-Town

Shock in CHI-Town

The City of Chicago was dropped from consideration on the first ballot by the Olympic organizing committee… full story here

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Filed under 2016 Olympics, Culture, News, Sports, Uncategorized