FIVE THINGS I’M THINKING ABOUT TODAY

1. It’s Tuesday, February 10, 2015. It’s 39 days until spring. What else matters?

2. Kayla Mueller’s death has been confirmed, according to her family. Mueller is the American aid worker whose ideals led her to the cesspool of conflict that is Syria. She was kidnapped in 2013 by the pillbugs who go by the name ISIS.

I’m not sure how a family copes with something like this, but my thoughts are with the Muellers and all the families whose loved ones have been ruthlessly snuffed out by or because of these thugs.

3. If Barack Obama said the sun rises in the east, his critics would accuse him of bias against other parts of the country.

The latest nonsense involving the president concerns his comments at last week’s National Prayer Breakfast, when he said that religious extremism and turning a blind eye to injustice are wrong no matter who commits them. And then, after chiding the evil being committed by people claiming the mantle of Islam, he talked about how people claiming the mantle of Christianity committed the evils of slavery and the Crusades.

The critics went crazy. Equating Christianity with ISIS. OMG (so to speak)!

Which, of course, he didn’t do.

This goes to the whole idea of why the president won’t say that ISIS and al-Qaeda are radical Islamists. He’s right not to — calling them that keeps them wrapped in the mantle of Islam. And given what they do to Muslims, killing them by the score, they shouldn’t have that privilege.

The people the U.S. is helping to fight in the Middle East aren’t Islamists. They’re scum, and letting them use Islam as a smoke screen doesn’t get rid of them any faster. 

4.  The next time someone from Optimum rings my doorbell or calls me to explain why I need to switch to their service, this is the link I will send them: http://www.northjersey.com/news/sullivan-angry-knicks-owner-goes-from-bad-to-worse-1.1267897

Bergen Record columnist Tara Sullivan recounts this week’s tale of stupidity involving James Dolan, who runs Optimum as well as the New York Knicks. Dolan responded to an e-mail from a longtime fan angry about how lousy the Knicks are by insinuating the fan is an alcoholic and telling him to go root for the Brooklyn Nets, the other pro basketball team in New York.

When Optimum, formerly Cablevision, was the only TV service in town, it stunk. It had that monopoly for 17 of the years I’ve lived in Rockland County, and I missed lots of big TV moments because of the crappy quality. So I fled to DirecTV when I had the chance, and then to Verizon FiOS when it was to my cost benefit. Both services were so much better than Cablevision that it was laughable to think I would go back.

The side benefit of switching is that I do not directly give one penny of my money to anything involving James Dolan. Which is why I already switched to the Nets. I hope the fan who wrote the e-mail joins me.

5. Same-sex marriages continue in Alabama. Efforts to stop it by the moronic chief justice of the state aren’t working. Something to think about if you think there’s no good news anywhere. 

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