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Shocker, the Democrat-controlled House approved statehood for the District of Columbia.

Certainly it was an effort based in kindness or inclusion.

It would never be a political power grab. No, not the Democrats. Not after all the outrage about how the changes in Georgia election law were because of the Republicans' efforts to gain a political advantage.

Here's the thing: All sides do it and feign outrage at the other side's identical motives.

And before you fire up your email hate, it's clear that both parties are cracked. It's like the 2016 presidential election, in how we were forced to pick the best of the worst. Same can be said by two parties filled with people whose No. 1 goal is keeping their cushy, taxpayer-funded job rather than doing their cushy, taxpayer-funded job.

Now go get your email hate going. Because we need a 51st state like we need three more do-nothing, party-centric members of Congress.

 

Olympic mettle

So the International Olympic Committee said earlier this week that it will continue to follow Rule 50 in its bylaws.

Rule 50, you see, bans protests from athletes to protect the "political neutrality" of the games. It reads, "No kind of demonstration or political, religious, or racial propaganda is permitted in any Olympic sites, venues or other areas."

This, of course, put a whole bunch of America's Olympic hopefuls in a snit, even though the IOC surveyed more than 3,500 Olympic hopefuls from around the world, and 70% viewed demonstrations during the opening and closing ceremonies as "not appropriate" and two-thirds disapproved of demonstrations at the medal stands.

Good.

The Athletes' Commission suggested the IOC hold a moment of solidarity to promote awareness against discrimination. And the U.S. Olympic Committee has said it will allow protests during the qualifying events to earn a spot on the US Olympic teams, including allowing face masks with varying phrases from "Black Lives Matter" to "justice" on them.

 

A safe bet

More and more states are joining the money-making enterprise of legalized sports wagering.

Heck, Tennessee handled close to half a billion bucks in sports bets in its first four months.

Now New York is among the latest to join the fray, and it is adding an interesting wrinkle. One of the main beneficiaries from the taxes paid back to the state will be youth sports organizations across the Empire State.

You can almost hear the conversation now, as a Yonkers wife looks at the ATM withdrawals and asks, "Honey why in the name of Derek Jeter are you putting two dimes on West Coast WNBA games?"

"It's simple," the husband responds. "It's for the children."

 

Final shot

Chester Bankston has spent a large part of his adult life in public service. He announced the end of May will be the end of his run, which most recently has been a more than decadelong stint on the Hamilton County Commission.

He and I have not always agreed, but I thank him for his willingness to try to be part of the solution. We need more folks willing to make that commitment, especially at the local level.

The commission will pick a replacement to serve out the rest of his term, and two of the names — Steve Highlander and Dean Moorhouse — were floated earlier this week.

I'm sure either one of those cats would be a fine choice. I also hope the commission will get some interest — or even try to find some interest — from some of the younger leaders in our county.

Like folks who only know Ron Howard as a director and not Richie Cunningham. (Never mind Opie Taylor.)

Contact Jay Greeson at jgreeson@timesfreepress.com.

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Jay Greeson
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