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Twisted Logic 

A perfectly legal matrimony between two sodden barflies that lasts 55 hours sort of throws cold water on the “sanctity of marriage” argument.

Just wondering ... how we can keep telling high-school students, with a straight face, that they’re free to swill all the sugar- and-caffeine-laden soft drinks they can afford, but we’ll suspend ’em if we catch ’em passing a couple of aspirin to a friend who has a headache.

In Virginia Beach, the schools have a multiyear $10,000,000 contract with Pepsi-Cola; in Norfolk, the schools have a similar $3,200,000 deal with Coke.

Any student who’s handy at math can count the zeroes in those statements and conclude that adults will construct a “zero-tolerance” policy according to the actual number of zeroes involved — so long as there’s a dollar sign at the beginning of the equation.

When we tell bright young students that cola sales are a vital part of a school district’s revenue stream, should we wonder if they see it as no accident that “hyperglycemia” and “hypocrisy” are on the same page in the dictionary?

Just wondering ... how long Major League Baseball will hold to the argument, with a straight face, that being a notorious gambler and a shameless liar is reason enough to keep Pete Rose out of the Hall of Fame.

The man whom Rose displaced as the all-time major league leader in base hits was Hall of Famer Ty Cobb, a notorious gambler and a shameless liar. But Cobb’s resume also had these highlights:

He pistol-whipped a would-be mugger to death in an alley in Detroit. He viciously beat a groundskeeper who committed the sin of touching Cobb on the shoulder.

He choked a waitress with his bare hands for mixing up his order. He thrashed his son with a horsewhip for flunking out of college. He punched out a crippled fan who’d heckled him. And on and on.

But, by baseball logic, all of that’s OK because nobody ever proved that Cobb had bet a sawbuck on a ballgame while in uniform.

Having Cobb in the Hall of Fame while arguing that Rose is too immoral is like attacking Saddam Hussein while sending foreign aid to Kim Jong Il.

Just wondering ... when we get done marveling at the latest photos of Mars — and the engineering truly is a marvel — whether anybody can say with a straight face that $840 million was a pretty good deal for some photos of a desert, some red rocks, and more hints as to whether there might have been dew on the surface there 10 million years ago.

OK, a lot of serious people who know more than I do are convinced that it’s important to know if water once existed there. Fair enough. But once we answer that question with a yes or a no, what do we do next with that knowledge?

Now, President Bush wants to ready us for manned exploration of Mars. Here’s what Stanford University’s Douglas Osheroff, who holds a Nobel Prize in physics, had to say: “I think we’re still 30 years from going to Mars, and if there’s any reason to do that, I don’t know.”

If Osheroff, who helped investigate the shuttle Columbia accident, can’t think of a reason for humans to go there, I feel a bit better that I can’t think of one either.

Oops. ’Scuse me. Bad analogy there. S



Dave Addis is a columnist for the Virginian-Pilot. Contact Dave at (757) 446-2726 or at dave.addis@cox.net.

Opinions expressed on the Back Page are those of the writer and not necessarily those of Style Weekly

© 2004 HamptonRoads.com/PilotOnline.com
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