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September 2, 2010     Lovell Chronicle
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4 J The Lovell Chronicle J September 2, 2010 www.LovellChronicle.com i00urVtew BYU exit a bad decision It's a bad move for Brigham Young University to split from the Mountain West Conference and join the West Coast Conference - becoming independent in football: bad for the Mountain West, bad for traditional rivalries and bad for BYU. Big money is driving this move, primarily television mon- ey, with BYU hoping to become the Notre Dame of the West and strike its own lucrative TV deal with ESPN and rake in revenue from its own church-sponsored network. The uni- versity also hopes that it can land big bowl games - includ- ing the top BCS bowls - and not have to share bowl reve- nue with fellow conference members. It's a gamble that could well pay off for the university, but it proves that big money is the top priority in the current state of affairs with college athletics. College athletics is big business, and schools are will- ing to part with decades-long traditional rivalries in order to rake in the dough. This all started when the University of Texas threatened to break up the Big 12 and take a number of large schools with them. That didn't happen for various reasons, but it started the dominoes falling. The University of Colorado - not exactly an athletic pow- erhouse - bolted for the PAC 10, and the University of Utah joined them, splitting from the Mountain West. Nebraska will join the Big 10, which, oddly, has 11 teams and will soon have 12. BYU was surely green with jealousy that their local in- state rival- Utah -- received an invitation from the pres- tigious PAC 10 and also was chaffing under the limited- revenue television deal with the Mountain West Television Network. With freedom to now pursue a new TV package and set loose the nationwide church network with its best- in-the-nation high definition technology, the move to inde- pendent status certainly makes sense financially. But what about traditional conference ties? What about the fans? And what about the non-football student athletes? The West Coast Conference is a minor conference ex- cept for a couple of teams in men's basketball, notably Gon- zaga and St. Mary's. But if you're a BYU basketball player or a BYU hoops fan, are you looking forward to that hot BYU vs. Santa Clara conference game? Or how about playing in the huge Firestone Fieldhouse at Pepperdine with its 3,104- seat capacity instead of at the Pit in Albuquerque or the Thomas and Mack in Las Vegas?'  Is BYU going big time in footbaff'at the expense of all other sports? It would appear so. And there's no guarantee that going independent will work. During the summer, BYU tried to forge a deal with the Western Athletic Conference to go independent in football and join the conference in other sports, agreeing to play four football games a year against WAC teams. Now, BYU will have to scramble to put together a national schedule. The Mountain West Conference protected itself by invit- ing the two remaining top WAC schools - Fresno State and the University of Nevada (Reno) - into the conference, join- ing Boise State, which had already received an invitation. That jerked the rug out from under BYU's plans, and it looked like the Cougars would remain in the Mountain West, at least for now. But once the smell of big dollars is in the air, it's hard to pass it up, and BYU struck a deal with the WCC. So BYU's actions may essentially lead to the destruc- tion of the VVAC, a league it was snuggling up to over the last few months, but now the Cougars are moving further west. Every man for himself, right? Certainly, BYU and Utah have become major players in the world of college football, at the moment rising above programs like Wyoming, New Mexico and Colorado State. But whatever happened to loyalty? What happened to long- time traditional rivalries? Both BYU and Utah were founding members of the WAC and later the Mountain West. The sad thing is, the Mountain West has been on the verge of reaching big time BCS status, moving up with the likes of the SEC, Big 10, Big 12, and PAC 10 - or whatever the leagues will be called now. With Boise State joining the league, there would have been a powerful lineup of TCU, Utah, BYU and Boise State to go with traditionally strong Air Force and up-and-coming Wyoming and others. Now it's all breaking up. It's sad and it's unfortunate. Cougar fans in Wyoming surely can't be happy. We've already spoken to several who don't like the move one bit. There will be no more chances to see the Cougars in Laramie. Will fans want to make the long drive to Provo for that big BYU-Loyola Marymount con- ference game? As one Cougar fan put it succinctly: Yuck. --David Peck YOUR CALI00NI>AR IS VERY NICE, BILLY-- BUT LEFT OFF WI00I00KI00NDS ANI> HOLIDAYS... WE'RE RANCHERS! Letters to the editor Arizona couple appreciates canyon assistance Dear Editor, I know that I am not alone in saying that when you work in an office of a construction compa- ny you are often on the receiving end of complaining phone calls. Although I have never called a company and complained about a construction site, I admit I do complain to those lucky enough to be riding with me. In spite of the bad rap the con- struction industry gets, should a motorist break down in our con- struction areas, the guys do what they can to help. We were working in the Sho- shoni-Thermopolis area this last month when such a motorist had a breakdown. Eric Schaefer, Pav- ing Superintendent, Michael Frost, President, and employees from S&L Industrial helped an Arizona couple fix a tire. To our surprise and for the first time we received the following "thank you" e-mail. Dear Sirs/Madams, We were traveling from AZ to Cody on Wednesday of last week (8/4) when I had a blowout on our horse trailer, just before I got to Wind River Canyon. As you are aware, there are very few places to pull over to change a tire on that road. I slowly moved my rig to a turnout lace and parked. My husband, because of a very bad back, is incapable of helping me and while I could have changed the tire-eventually- I saw a flag- man ahead so I walked to his po- sition to inquire about some assis- tance. I believe he said he worked for S&L and was on his first day on the job. He couldn't have been more helpful; he got right on his radio and asked if anyone could help me with a flat. I stood and visited with him for a few min- utes until he got confirmation that someone was on their way. A woman flagger came by as well and also assisted with radioing the foreman or supervisor. I will contact S&L, also. I feel badly that I did not get anyone's name. A young gentle- man came, in a company pickup, and stopped to pick me up (I was walking back to my rig) and as soon as we got to the truck he got my trailer wheels up on the blocks we have and in no time we had on a new tire. He said the tire was too low so asked me to follow him to a staging area where we waited for the service vehicle to come and air up the tire. Several young men kept checking on us and after the service truck had me aired up we were given a "private escort" past the construction area and were on our way. We just felt that you should know that you have a fine bunch of men and women working for you and we are very grateful for the kindness and assistance. You should be very proud to have them. Please, if it is possible to iden- tify them, thanks them very much from us. Pat and Stan Harter Gilbert, AZ I agree, we do have a "fine bunch of men and women" work- ing for us. Barb Rodriguez Mountain Construction Company Respecting religious differences: true tolerance During the 20th century, many erup- tions of violent international friction were rooted in secular problems. The two World Wars, the Korean War and the Vietnam War were founded on political and nation- al differences. Since the 1970s, however, internation- al violence often seems rooted in religious differences, in attempts by members of one religion to control or get back at members of another. While these broad generaliza- tions have multiple exceptions, many peo- ple now see religion as the primary source of conflict. With John Lennon, they want to imagine a world in which religions do not provide humanity with a heaven and a hell (or anything else) to fight for. Is it possible to get rid of religions? No, not re- ally. Centuries after the intellectual Enlightenment pushed religion off its throne by elevating human reason above divine revelation and creating the sci- ences, religion is still around. Many had hoped and even predicted that religion would disappear. Re- ligion was likened to a mental illness, and, in line with Sigmund Freud's "talking cure," once patients recognized it, they would be healed of the affliction. That has not happened, obviously. So, if we want to live in a world where religious beliefs do not spark conflicts, what approach should we take? In a recent op-ed piece in the New York Times, "Many Faiths, One Truth," the Dalai Lama argues that the world's people need to practice toler- ance of other people's religions. After admitting that every religion has its core, unique elements, the Da- lai Lama argues that the key theme of compassion runs through all religions. Tolerance, he implies, is the emphasis of similarities, and learning from each religion in the area(s) where they are similar. Certainly the Dalai Lama is correct in identi- fying compassion for others--in both suffering and their joy--as a concern shared by many, if not all, religions. Indeed, one could generalize that most re- ligions share their central moral values. They all possess a version of the Golden Rule; they are con- cerned about families and the interrelationships of Paul V.M. Flesher Religion Today their members; they are against murder and theft, promote equal justice for all, and so on. Shared moral values might serve as a basis for the peaceful interaction of members of different religions around the world, if it were not for one thing. In each religion, those values are supported and legitimized by what is distinctive to that religion. In 1997, I created a Web- site called Exploring Religions, which looked at five world religions. In it, I put forward the idea that each religion identified a core problem with human- ity's existence. The religion then laid out a process for individuals that would re- solve this human problem, a process that usually in- volved divine help. In Christianity, the problem was sin; in Buddhism, the human problem was suffering; in Islam, the problem was "forgetfulness" of God (Al- lah). Each religion shaped its theology and its cen- tral practices to help people overcome the human problem and achieve humanity's ultimate goal. For each religion, the human problem and its solution is the religion's central feature. As Shrek's Donkey might say, it is the innermost core of the on- ion when all the layers are removed. Moral values form one of the layers, and thus belong to the reli- gion, but they do not comprise its core. If tolerance among religions is ever going to come about, it will only be when it understands and accepts the differences between the religions. While the Dalai Lama wants to emphasize the similarities- human compassion and other moral values-it is the acceptance of and respect for religious differences that constitutes true tolerance. As Boston University religion professor Stephen Prothero recently observed, "One of the common misconceptions about the world's religions is that they plumb the same depths, ask the same ques- tions. They do not." Accepting that and still getting along is where true tolerance lies. Religion Today is contributed by UW's Reli- gious Studies Program to examine and promote dis- cussion of religious issues. UPSP 321-060 234 E. Main, Lovell, Wyoming 82431 307-548-2217 FAX 307-548-2218 Emafh Icnews@tctwest.net David Peck, Editor and Publisher Editor ........................................................................... David Peck News Editor ........................................................ Brad Devereaux Office Manager ..................................................... Gladys McNeil Advertising Manager ............................................... Erin Henson Production Manager .................................................. Pat Parmer Staff ......................................... Dorothy Nelson, Marwyn Layne Kymbre Moorehead, Jason Zeller, Teressa Ennis, Don Dover, Mike Kitchen the|OVe|| chromcle ,,%.N!,  I Published weekly on Thursday at Lovell, Wyoming Periodicals Postage paid at Lovell, WY SUBSCRIPTION RATES: 1 year in Big Horn and Park counties .............................. $25.00 1 year in Wyoming ............................................................. $35.00 1 Year out-of-Wyoming ...................................................... $40.00 Single Copy .............................................................................. 75 Postmaster, Send Address Changes to: The Lovell Chronicle, 234 E. Main St., Lovell, WY 82431 E-MaU: lcnews@tctwest.net Website: www.lovellchronicle.com MEMBER: [ National Newspaper Association I Wyoming Press Association 2009 AWARD-WINNING NEWSPAPER