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Why Did God Create Cannabis?

first_imgA Discussion about the Bible, Drugs, Cannabis, and Creationby Jerry Bergman, PhDWith the recent legalization of the recreational use of the mind-altering drug cannabis in many states, and the legalization of its medical use in most states, questions arise about the drug from a creation-worldview standpoint. The main psychoactive component of cannabis is tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). One major question is, why did God create drugs that are poisonous or that can cause harm? Poisonous substances include anything that can physically harm us if we inhale, swallow or touch it. They range from bee stings to cyanide poisoning.Original Creation v Corrupted NatureCreationists consider questions that arise related to God’s purpose of plants that can be used for evil. Some propose certain plants became problematic due to the Fall, or have become more dangerous since they were first created due to mutations. In light of these questions, how should Bible believers approach the political issues related to marijuana’s use today?  The Scriptures declared all creation, including plants, to have been good initially. Genesis 1 is clear: “God said, ‘Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the surface of all the earth, and every tree which has fruit yielding seed; it shall be food for you.’”[1] Scriptures that caution ingesting certain plants are Galatians 5:20, Revelation 9:21, 18:23, 21:8, and 22:15.A State of MindThe Greek word used in these scriptures is “pharmakia” (Greek: φαρμακεία) which literally means “drugs,” and is the source of the English word “pharmacy.” Pharmakia is translated in our English Bible as either “witchcraft” or “sorcery” because of the strong connection of mind-altering-drugs to “witchcraft,” “sorcery,” and the casting of spells. In short, the condemnation of witchcraft is linked with mind-altering drugs such as cannabis. Thus, the concern is the abuse of mind-altering drugs that put the user in a wrong state of mind. Christians are enjoined to keep a clear, active mind: “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind,” Paul said, “that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect” (Romans 12:2). To love God with all our mind, we must be in our right mind, exercising judgment, discernment, and self-control.Dosage and Individual DifferencesA major point is this: any chemical, both plant-derived and otherwise, can be abused. A second point is, “the dose level is the poison.” This means most every known chemical is not poisonous in small doses, and all chemicals are poisonous in large enough doses. The only exception I am aware of is dimethylmercury, of which even extremely small doses (less than 0.1 mL) are poisonous.[2] The conclusion that all chemicals are poisonous in large doses even includes water, which is lethal in large doses. Danger ensues if the amount of water is so high that it becomes difficult for the kidneys to process it rapidly enough. The result is too much body water, thus causing the mineral levels to become too dilute, especially when dangerously low levels of sodium result, producing hyponatremia. No more than four liters in 4 hours is a rough guideline to avoid harm, but the danger level depends on the climate and the person, their sex, weight, age, and health status.* The same thing is true of cannabis. At a low enough level, it can do no harm.*For fun, read the classic DHMO Parody.My medical school toxicology class taught by a creationist, Dr. Robert Forney, made this clear. Nothing is toxic in small enough amounts, including dimethylmercury, and everything is toxic in large enough amounts.* How toxic a chemical is depends on how easily it is absorbed and metabolized, and how rapidly it is expelled by the body. Furthermore, not everyone is equally affected by a specific toxic substance. Some animal species are more susceptible to various poisons, others far less susceptible. One classic example is that it requires 1,000 times more dioxin to kill a hamster than a guinea pig. The high level of guinea pigs’ sensitivity makes them ideal for certain kinds of toxicity research.*Some hormetic substances are actually beneficial in small amounts, but reverse and become toxic as dosage increases.Dosage-Dependent HarmSome compounds, although very toxic even in small amounts, also function as miracle drugs when used properly. Botulism produced by Clostridium botulinum bacteria is one of the most toxic compounds known to mankind. It is also the most toxic substance produced by living organisms, bacteria in this case. A single gram (0.04 ounces) can kill 14,000 people if swallowed – or 8.3 million if injected![3] Botulinum works by disrupting communication between nerves and muscle cells, paralyzing its victims, and leading to respiratory failure because the victim cannot breathe.[4] Extremely small doses of botulinum toxin can, however, be used to treat muscle spasms and excessive sweating. It can even be used to partly paralyze muscles that cause wrinkles. For this use it is sold commercially as Botox.Chemistry and ConsciousnessCannabis sativa, drawing by Koehler c. 1900With this background, let us consider cannabis use for Bible believers. If it is used to achieve a state of normality, such as to relieve pain, this could be an appropriate use (cf. Proverbs 31:4-7). When used for the purpose of achieving an abnormal out-of-mind state, however, that would be an issue. The fact that some regard the “out-of-mind state” as a desirable state raises spiritual red flags; God wants us in “our right minds.” One has to evaluate the total effect and consequence of the results of the out-of-mind state. Compare the pleasure of marijuana with some other feelings people consider pleasurable. Some people enjoy inflecting pain on others — a tendency called sadism, and others enjoy experiencing pain — a tendency called masochism. Though called “pleasurable” by some, these behaviors often cause serious health damage, even death, and thus given the Biblical rule noted above would be condemned. Aside from the psychological harm marijuana can cause, the effects of burning cannabis leaves must be considered. The smoke contains carcinogens, such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. A desire to care for one’s body as the temple of the Lord should militate against willfully ingesting carcinogens for “pleasure.”Given these facts, cannabis use by Bible believers needs to be evaluated critically. And Christ followers would also want to be discerning about the possible cultural effects of widespread use of substances that alter people’s perceptions, e.g., while driving or working. Enough research is now available to make some tentative judgements.From my experience working with drug users at Alexandria House in Detroit, I spent much time discussing the motivation and experience of the clients, most of whom were in this treatment center by court order for drug use. Their response to its use varied greatly. Some described marijuana smoking like breathing smelly air and having no effect. Others noted it caused them to become irrationally paranoid, and yet others to commit crimes of violence, which is what got them into the program. The scientific research supports this experience.From my hospital work experience, I learned that cannabis had some use in dealing with nausea from cancer drugs and relieving pain, but is much less effective than opiates. The peer-reviewed research in leading medical journals supports my conclusion that marijuana can cause, or worsen, severe mental illness, especially psychosis, a fact that has been known for over a decade.[5]Long-Term EffectsOne question to ask is, “Marijuana abuse can lead to transient psychosis, but can it cause or worsen psychotic disorders like schizophrenia?” The evidence from key research reports is “that marijuana use, especially in early adolescence, can lead to psychotic disorders in adulthood, such as schizophrenia.”[6] The latest study in a special section of Nature about cannabis supported this conclusion, finding psychosis was three times greater in those who used cannabis daily compared to people who never used the drug. The researchers extrapolated this finding, concluding “where highly potent cannabis was most available, the researchers calculated that …  eliminating its use would reduce psychosis rates in London by 30% and in Amsterdam by 50%.[7]Difficulty of Establishing CertaintyAs a whole, cannabis has the potential for causing severe psychoses, supporting its classification as a mind-altering drug that Scripture warns about. Because marijuana was illegal in the USA till recently, studies were few. More research on potential medical applications is warranted; one most recent review of the evidence was lambasted because firm scientific studies were too few and problematic.[9] Consider that it took over two centuries to finally prove beyond any doubt that smoking tobacco causes lethal diseases including cancer and heart disease. It may also take years to establish the same ‘beyond-a-doubt’ level of proof for cannabis. But enough evidence now exists to decide that the safest course by far is to avoid the drug at all costs, unless some clear medical use is warranted.[10] In the Nature special issue, Clement and her colleagues analyzed the findings of 68 reviews of cannabis research, and fully 62 foundassociations between the drug and various adverse outcomes, including impaired driving, increased risk of stroke and testicular cancer, brain changes that could affect learning and memory, and a particularly consistent link between cannabis use and mental illnesses involving psychosis. Risks were highest for teenagers, pregnant women and people already at risk of mental illness.[11]Some GuidelinesThe few beneficial uses that exist for Cannabis, apart from the intoxicating effects that make it controversial, are very limited and vary according to individual factors. I am convinced from my own experience, and my review of the peer-reviewed scientific literature, that long-term use of marijuana—no matter how ingested—will eventually cause enormous problems in society. I may well in the future sadly say, “I told you so,” as have the many scientific studies of the use of marijuana. I learned from my work experience that Cannabis is highly addictive and many occasional users do, in fact, become addicted.In conclusion, while cannabis is not “evil,” and is “just a plant” that manifests (as all of creation) clear evidence of very good design, one cannot justify smoking or eating it on that basis. Cactus is very good, but we don’t hug it. Poison oak is just a plant, but we don’t smear its leaves on our skin. Many garden plants like castor bean and poinsettia are nice to look at, but deadly in the body. Cannabis can help a few medical conditions, like certain types of epilepsy, but it is not a cure-all. And as Nature reported, it can have horrible side effects. [8] Although the use of marijuana, like cigarettes or alcohol, when not illegal, falls within individual conscience, is it worth the risks, when there are thousands of other good plants without such dangers that can satisfy us with pleasure and health? Paul’s advice to the Corinthians is relevant here: “All things are lawful for me, but not all things are profitable. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be mastered by anything.” (I Corinthians 6:12).References[1] Genesis 1:29. New American Standard Bible (NASB), 1977.[2] Dimethylmercury is one of the strongest known neurotoxins. A quantity less than 0.1 mL is capable of inducing severe mercury poisoning. It is also easily absorbed through the skin, which creates problems in working with it. See https://www.osha.gov/dts/hib/hib_data/hib19980309.html[3] Zajtchuk, R. 1997. Textbook of Military Medicine. Office of The Surgeon General at TMM Publications, Borden Institute, Washington, D.C.: Walter Reed Army Medical Center, 20307-5001.[4] Middlebrook, John L. 1986. Cellular Mechanism of Action of Botulinum Neurotoxin. Journal of Toxicology, 5(2):177-190.[5] Raby, Wilfrid Noël. 2013. Comorbid Cannabis Misuse in Psychotic Disorders: Treatment Strategies. Primary Psychiatry, 6(4):29-34, May.[6] Raby, 2013, p. 29.[7]  di Forti, Marta et al., 2019. Potent pot linked to Psychosis. Lancet Psychiatry. 6, 427–436.[8] Drew, Liam. 2019. Cannabis research round-up. Highlights from laboratory studies and clinical trials. Nature. 572(s21). August, 29.[9] Berenson, Alex. 2019. Tell Your Children: The Truth About Marijuana, Mental Illness, and Violence. New York, NY: Free Press.[10] Gogek, Ed. 2015. Marijuana Debunked: A handbook for parents, pundits and politicians who want to know the case against legalization. New York, NY: innerQuest. This book was written by a medical doctor with extensive experience in treating persons addicted to drugs, and this book is much better documented to the scientific literature than Berenson’s book.[11] Sohn, Emily. 2019. Weighing the dangers of cannabis. As interest builds in the potential health benefits from the plant, accumulating evidence confirms that taking the drug also carries risks. Nature, 572, S16-S18 August, 28.Dr. Jerry Bergman has taught biology, genetics, chemistry, biochemistry, anthropology, geology, and microbiology at several colleges and universities including for over 40 years at Bowling Green State University, Medical College of Ohio where he was a research associate in experimental pathology, and The University of Toledo. He is a graduate of the Medical College of Ohio, Wayne State University in Detroit, the University of Toledo, and Bowling Green State University. He has over 1,300 publications in 12 languages and 40 books and monographs. His books and textbooks that include chapters that he authored, are in over 1,500 college libraries in 27 countries. So far over 80,000 copies of the 40 books and monographs that he has authored or co-authored are in print. For more articles by Dr Bergman, see his Author Profile.(Visited 1,021 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Steenkamp: SA rugby player of the year

first_img2 November 2010Gurthro Steenkamp of the Blue Bulls was named the South African Rugby Union Player of the Year on Monday. He succeeds his team-mate Fourie du Preez.The big loosehead prop shone for the Bulls as the franchise claimed its third Super 14 title and stood out for the Springboks too. Not only did he exhibit improved scrummaging in 2010, but he also excelled around the field, producing a high tackle count and uesful contributions as a ball carrier.The other nominees for the award were Francois Hougaard, also of the Bulls, and the Western Province and Stormers trio of Gio Aplon, Juan de Jongh, and Schalk Burger.Team of the YearWhile the Bulls produced the Player of the Year, they were also recognised as a unit and named the SARU Team of the Year after winning the Super 14 for the third time in four years with a 25-17 victory over the Stormers in Soweto.Lions flyhalf Elton Jantjies was named the SARU Young Player of the Year. He also picked up the SA under-20 Player of the Year Award after excelling at the IRB Junior World Championships in Argentina, where South Africa finished third.Together with 20-year-old Patrick Lambie, Jantjies was chosen for the Springboks’ end-of-year tour. The emergence of the two young playmakers has given supporters of the green and gold a lot of optimism about the future.Western Province awardsAlthough his team was beaten in the final of the Currie Cup, Western Province coach Allister Coetzee was given some consolation as he picked up the Absa Coach of the Year award. There was another award for Province when their exciting winger, Gio Aplon, was named the Players’ Player of the Year.There was success for the Stormers, with Andries Bekker being named the Vodacom Super 14 Player of the Year after an impressive season in the southern hemisphere’s leading provincial competition.Another Stormer, Jaque Fourie, won the SuperSport Try of the Year for scoring a stunning five-pointer against the Crusaders after a superb run at Newlands.Record try scorerGriquas’ Bjorn Basson was named the Currie Cup Premier Division Player of the Year after setting a record with 21 tries in the season. The flying winger has been snapped up by the Blue Bulls for next season.The Eastern Province Kings’ Norman Nelson, who dotted down nine times in the season, was chosen as the Absa Currie Cup First Division Player of the Year. The Kings claimed the First Division title with a hard-fought 16-12 victory over the South Western Districts Eagles in George.Francois Brummer of the Blue Bulls picked up the Vodacom Cup Player of the Year award. His drop-kick after the final whistle helped the Blue Bulls edge the Free State Cheetahs 31-29 to win the competition.Kyle Brown won the Sasol Sevens Player of the Year Award.Club rugbyStellenbosch University was beaten in the final of the SAA Club Championships, going down to College Rovers, but Maties’ Lourens Adriaanse was named the SAA Club Championships Player of the Year.Lock Dolly Mavungwana received the SARU Women’s Rugby Achiever of the Year award.Craig Joubert, who took charge of the Currie Cup final, won the Marriot Refereeing Achievement of the Year award.Johan Goosen of Free State, yet another fine product of the country’s top rugby school, Grey College, was named the Coca-Cola Craven Week Player of the Tournament.Interestingly, the Sharks, winners of the Absa Currie Cup, didn’t win a single award!Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

Just Say No to Idling

first_imgThe easiest energy savings come from little changes in our behavior that don’t cause any hardship—or even result in ancillary benefits. Such is the case with reducing the amount of time spent idling a car engine when stopped. Turning off the ignition at the drive-up window or when pulled over to take a cell phone call not only saves energy (burning less gasoline), but also pollutes less—a big benefit for the teller at the drive-up bank window. You might even improve your car’s operation.Average drivers in America idle five to ten minutes per day—sitting at traffic lights, warming up the car in the morning, waiting at the drive-up McDonalds, or picking up the kids at the bus stop. This is “voluntary idling”—as opposed to the idling that occurs in traffic congestion. Idling ten minutes per day wastes about 30 gallons of gas per year. Collectively, Americans consume about 3.8 million gallons of gasoline per day from voluntary idling.Idling vehicles are heavy polluters. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that an average car emits 20 times more air pollution when idling than it does when being driven at 32 miles per hour. Idling a medium-sized car just five minutes each day will crank out about 30 pounds of harmful pollutants in a year plus 300 pounds of carbon dioxide.Some of these compounds are pretty potent. EPA estimates that air toxins emitted by vehicles cause half of all cancers attributed to outdoor sources of air pollutants in the U.S. Idling diesel vehicles are particularly problematic due to the very small particulates and some 40 chemicals emitted from the exhaust that are classified as “hazardous air pollutants” under the Clean Air Act. Because children are particularly vulnerable to hazardous chemicals, idling of school busses has been targeted by health activists in communities throughout the country, including locally.There are a number of myths about idling:Myth 1: Cars should idle for several minutes before being driven. Unless you have an old car with a carbureted engine, this myth is wrong except in extremely cold weather. Modern engines need no more than 30 seconds of operation to circulate engine oil before being safely driven (though it’s best to avoid hard acceleration until the car is fully warmed up).Myth 2: Each time you turn off and then restart a car you waste more energy than if you leave it idling. Studies show that the actual “break-even” point for turning off a car is between six and ten seconds. In other words, if you’re going to be stopped for more than ten seconds, it makes sense to turn off the ignition.Myth 3: Repeatedly restarting a car is hard on the engine and quickly drains the battery. There is slight wear on the starter motor and some battery discharge that occurs, but this is minor. The savings from burning less gasoline pay back that added maintenance cost many-fold over the course of a year. In fact, idling a car forces the engine to operate in an inefficient, gasoline-rich mode that can reduce performance and degrade mileage.* * *At least 17 states currently have some form of statewide restrictions on idling, including all New England states…except Vermont—plus some states not known for environmental leadership, such as Nevada, South Carolina, and Utah. This is pretty embarrassing for a state often considered the greenest in the country!In addition to these statewide laws, many municipalities have their own rules—some of which are significantly stricter than relevant state regulations. Locally, Putney has adopted an anti-idling ordinance.These state and municipal regulations vary dramatically—as does enforcement. New York City, for example, has one of the strictest no-idling regulations in the country (limiting idling to three minutes with various exceptions and with increasingly heavy fines for first, second, and third offenses)—yet one certainly sees a lot of trucks idling in the Big Apple.New technologies can also help reduce unnecessary idling. Hybrid cars have a feature that automatically turns the engine off when stopped (though that function only works in our Honda when the fan is turned off). We could make it easier for non-hybrid drivers to know when to turn the ignition off by installing traffic lights that count down the number of seconds remaining for the red light—thus helping drivers figure out whether to turn off the ignition while waiting.last_img read more

Electric vehicle startup NIO unveils self-driving concept car at SXSW

first_imgNIO, an electric vehicle startup backed by Chinese venture capitalists, unveiled its first self-driving car concept at SXSW this weekend.The NIO EVE is a “mobile living area” as much as a vehicle, and has been designed to accommodate long family journeys. The interior has reclining seats that can fold into beds and front seats that can rotate to face the back seats.See Also: Massachusetts to minimize zombie cars with a self-driving taxThe glass doubles as a display for entertainment or navigation purposes, similar to Volkswagen’s Sedric self-driving concept car or the BMW iNext. NIO did not say how it plans to manufacture the displays, which would need to be curved and tinted.Like most manufacturers, NIO wants to build an artificial intelligence that can take control of the car and provide an assistant service. It is calling the AI NOMI, and did not say if it would have any other functionality. Surprisingly, NIO still wants the driver to be able to take control of the vehicle, although that might disappear in later concepts.NIO EVE concept car’s interior debuted at SXSWNIO wants EVE to have a 600 mile range and a charging speed of 200 miles every 10 minutes. It said it also wants the EVE on the roads by 2020.Both of those goals seem very ambitious and almost whimsical, considering NIO has yet to launch a commercial vehicle. It debuted the NIO EP9 late last year, the “fastest electric vehicle” with a 0-60 mph of 2.7 seconds, but has yet to manufacture the car.NIO could reach all of its goals in three years, but the startup does reek of Faraday Future-like hype, when we haven’t seen anything concrete to prove it is capable of manufacturing and commercializing a self-driving vehicle. David Curry IT Trends of the Future That Are Worth Paying A… Break the Mold with Real-World Logistics AI and… Tags:#AI#artificial intelligence#Autonomous car#China#driverless#electric car#featured#NextEV#NIO#NIO EVE#Self-Driving#SXSW#top center_img 5 Ways IoT can Help to Reduce Automatic Vehicle… For Self-Driving Systems, Infrastructure and In… Related Posts last_img read more

‘Offer’ of talks comes amid bloodshed in Kashmir Valley

first_imgThe reported offer of talks by the Hurriyat leadership comes smack in the middle of operations against terrorists in Kashmir, in which a record number of 88 locals had been killed this year. The Jammu & Kashmir administration has said that recruitment to militant ranks is at its lowest now.But since June 12 alone, 10 security personnel, five of them CRPF men, lost their lives, and 10 others were injured in various attacks, including the fidayeen strike in Anantnag on June 12 and a blast using an improvised explosive device (IED) in Pulwama on June 17. These took the death toll of security personnel to 73, the highest since the corresponding period of 2005, when over 100 were killed.As the battle against militancy continued, the Centre’s Special Representative for Jammu and Kashmir, Dineshwar Sharma, quietly visited Srinagar — his first trip after the Lok Sabha election results were announced on May 23.The visit followed J&K Governor Satya Pal Malik’s statement on Saturday that the Hurriyat leaders were ready for talks and a change of guard in the Home Ministry, where BJP president Amit Shah has assumed office as Home Minister.Mr. Sharma was appointed in 2017 to carry forward the dialogue with all stakeholders, but his role had been undermined in the past by parallel action initiated by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) and the Enforcement Directorate. Several separatists, including Syed Ali Shah Geelani and Mirwaiz Umer Farooq, are being investigated by the agency for funding terror groups.“Yes, this was the first time after the general elections that I went to Srinagar. I would not like to disclose anything about the meetings,” Mr. Sharma told The Hindu. Of late, terrorists in Kashmir have resorted to new tactics. Buoyed by back-to-back successful operations against local militants in the past six weeks without any major casualty, Major Ketan Sharma, 32, was confident of wrapping up within hours a pre-dawn operation started around 4 a.m. against a hiding militant at Badoora village in Anantnag on June 17.Surprise elementThe Army, however, was taken by surprise by the level of training of the “non-local” militant of the Jaish-e-Muhammad (JeM). Major Sharma took bullets inches below the bulletproof headgear on the face, as he volunteered to neutralise the hiding militant with grenades while changing position in an uneven courtyard.“As soldiers raised their heads to fire at his position, the militant would fire back with precision. He succeeded in hitting four jawans. The fact he hit the Major in the face shows his level of training. He was a freshly infiltrated militant [from Pakistan]. There is a bid to push highly trained militants from across from the border,” a senior police officer told The Hindu. As the operation drew to a close at Achabal, three soldiers suffered injuries, while Major Sharma lost his life.Changing tackTop police officers of the counter-insurgency cell and the special operations group (SOG) said the surprise element thrown up by the militants by changing tack and technology resulted in higher casualties this year.“First, the suicide car blast on a CRPF convoy on February 14 inflicted the highest casualties, when 40 jawans died. In June, we saw a fidayeen militant coming close to a stationed CRPF mobile bunker at Anantnag’s busy market, killing five jawans and a police officer. In both these incidents, there was a surprise element,” a south Kashmir-based police officer said.The change in tack and technology by terrorists was because the surprise, short pre-dawn operations employed by the security forces were yielding results, with 113 militants killed this year, the police officer said. Of the 113, 25 were foreigners. “Around 45% of them belonged to the Jaish-e-Muhammad. We stepped up operations against the group and its leadership after the February 14 attack and killed over 40 of them in south Kashmir,” another counter-insurgency cell officer said.Another new tactic employed by the militants is to make IEDs locally and stage attacks away from the now-secured Srinagar-Jammu highway, which was, previously, the main focus of the militants.“The June 17 IED attack, where it was fitted to a Maruti car, took place on an interior road near Aarihal in Pulwama. Over 10 jawans were injured and two were left dead,” the police officer said.As the security forces take on the terrorists, it remains to be seen what happens with the reported offer of talks and the follow-up on Mr. Sharma’s visit.last_img read more

SEA Games conclusion sees early start to celebrations

first_imgKammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa Catriona Gray spends Thanksgiving by preparing meals for people with illnesses There was also a “wefie moment” when the public had the opportunity to be part of one of the biggest and widest “wefies” of all time with Najib and Khairy. WATCH: Streetboys show off slick dance moves in Vhong Navarro’s wedding Foreign Affairs Sec. Alan Peter Cayetano waves the Southeast Asian Games Federation flag after receiving it from Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) president Jose “Peping” Cojuangco and outgoing SEA Games Federation president Tunku Imran Tuanku Ja’afar of Malaysia during the closing ceremonies of the 29th Southeast Asian Games Wednesday night at the Bukit Jalil National Stadium in Kuala Lumpur. Cayetano will serve as chairman of the Philippine Southeast Asian Games Organizing Committee. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO/SEA GAMES POOLKUALA LUMPUR—A spectacular showstopper with a glorious medal tally of 323 was the magnificent end to the 29th SEA Games hosted by the nation.On the eve of the 60th National Day, with a roaring spirit of nationalism, thousands of Malaysians thronged the Bukit Jalil National Stadium to witness the closing ceremony of the Games that saw 7,090 athletes from 11 nations come together to compete in the spirit of sportsmanship.ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. “May they display cheerfulness and concord so that the Sports Torch may be carried on with even greater eagerness, courage and honour for the good of humanity throughout the ages,” he said in a short declaration yesterday.As the curtain came down on KL 2017, all eyes will now be fixed on Philippines, the host of the next edition in 2019.Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin, who is also the organising committee chairman, handed over the SEA Games Federation flag to South-East Asian Games Federation president and Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) president Tunku Imran Tuanku Jaafar.Tunku Imran then presented the flag to the Philippines Olympic Committee president Jose Cojuangco Jr, who received it on behalf of the Philippines government.Cojuangco Jr then passed it to the Secretary of Foreign Affairs and the 30th SEA Games organising committee chairman, His Excellency Alan Peter Cayetano.ADVERTISEMENT LOOK: Venues for 2019 SEA Games UPLB exempted from SEA Games class suspension Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMCcenter_img Sports venues to be ready in time for SEA Games PLAY LIST 00:59Sports venues to be ready in time for SEA Games03:07PH billiards team upbeat about gold medal chances in SEA Games05:25PH boxing team determined to deliver gold medals for PH00:50Trending Articles01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games03:04Filipino athletes share their expectations for 2019 SEA Games00:45Onyok Velasco see bright future for PH boxing in Olympics02:25PH women’s volleyball team motivated to deliver in front of hometown crowd01:27Filipino athletes get grand send-off ahead of SEA Games SEA Games in Calabarzon safe, secure – Solcom chief Olympic medalist Michael Phelps challenges Conor McGregor to swimming race Malaysia as the host dominated the medal tally and became the overall champion with a total haul of 145 golds, 92 silvers and 86 bronze.This surpassed the initial target of 111 gold medals, making it one of the best ever in the Games.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutPrime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak arrived at 9.40pm, accompanied by his wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor and his deputy Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.“I declare the 29th SEA Games Kuala Lumpur 2017 closed and I call upon the youth of the South-East Asian countries to assemble two years from now at the Philippines to celebrate the 30th SEA Games. Cayetano then waved the flag, signifying Philippines’ acceptance of hosting the Games.Among some of the highlights at the closing ceremony included a tribute video, a visual journey into the daily lives of some of the 13,000 volunteers at the SEA Games on the tasks and various duties they undertook to ensure the Games’ success. This then followed with Terima Kasih Daun Keladi (tribute of thanks), which was an inspiring fusion of communal singing and dancing, thanking Mother Nature.There were also a video featuring all the major moments and achievements during the Games, together with a short tribute from Malaysia’s medal winners to all Malaysians.Among them were shot putter Muhammad Ziyad Zolkefli, wushu champion Diana Bong Siong Lin and karate exponent R. Sharmendran.The closing ceremony mostly centred around Malaysia’s 60 years of nationhood with the region as well as unity, harmony, togetherness, aspiration and respect.Among the key highlights was an 80-minute long musical ode called the Soundtrack Negaraku that featured iconic Malaysian songs recreated for the public.It was accompanied by visuals that were a combination of projection mapping and LED showcasing the nation’s landscapes, symbolic moments and glimpse into its future.The other highlight included a video segment, which was a compilation of nation building and defining statements from history brought to life for all, accompanied by visuals from the 1957 Merdeka declaration cries by Tunku Abdul Rahman.There was also the multi-faceted rendition of the national anthem that reverberated across the stadium, with thousands singing, guided by a choir.This was then accompanied by a spectacle of fireworks. Read Next LATEST STORIES Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH View commentslast_img read more

Curry scores 35, Warriors come back to beat 76ers

first_imgRead Next Kevin Durant out with Achilles injury; to undergo MRI on Tuesday PLAY LIST 03:12Kevin Durant out with Achilles injury; to undergo MRI on Tuesday01:43Who are Filipinos rooting for in the NBA Finals?02:25Raptors or Warriors? PBA players take their pick of NBA champ01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Kerr called a pair of timeouts minutes apart in the first half. The second one came after the play he designed wasn’t run the way he drew it up. Curry took the blame for that one.“I forgot the play,” he said. “Four dribbles in, I didn’t know what I was supposed to do with the ball.”RESPECT THE PROCESSEmbiid, Simmons and the rest of the young Sixers left an impression on the Warriors.“They’re gonna be a load coming up for years,” Durant said. “You’re seeing a team that you should start following.”Kerr praised Philadelphia’s dynamic 1-2 punch.“Embiid and Simmons are different,” he said. “You don’t see that anymore. Simmons is incredibly gifted. The two of them together are difficult to cover.”TIP-INSWarriors: The 47 points allowed in the first quarter was their most given up in any quarter since Portland had 48 in the fourth quarter of a game on Nov. 14, 1992.76ers: J.J. Redick scored 20 points, and Dario Saric had 13 points and 10 rebounds. LATEST STORIES Japan ex-PM Nakasone who boosted ties with US dies at 101 Irving, Brown help Celtics rally for 15th straight win QC cops nab robbery gang leader, cohort “I was extremely aggressive in the first quarter, just didn’t make the shots,” Curry said. “We were more calculated in the third quarter.”A raucous, sellout crowd that chanted “Trust the Process” most of the night went silent while the Warriors put on a shooting clinic in the second half.Even veteran David West came off the bench and made big shots in the fourth quarter to give the Warriors distance. He finished with 14 points. Klay Thompson had 16.“We weren’t locked in, we weren’t focused in the first half,” Kerr said. “It took the embarrassment of being blown off the floor to get us going.”Embiid was coming off a career-best performance — 46 points, 15 rebounds, seven blocks, seven assists — in a 115-109 win at the Los Angeles Lakers on Wednesday.ADVERTISEMENT Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Kris Aquino ‘pretty chill about becoming irrelevant’ MOST READ It looked as if he was on his way to another monster game in the first quarter. Embiid embraced the frenzied fans and slapped hands with a guy sitting courtside after a dunk.But the Warriors showed why they’re the best by stifling Philadelphia in the second half to improve to 12-4.The Sixers, who lost 135-114 at Golden State one week ago, fell to 8-7.“We have to play for 48 minutes,” Embiid said.Playing his first game since receiving a lucrative contract extension, Robert Covington had 20 points for Philly.Back home for the first time following a five-game road trip to the West Coast, the Sixers showed no jet lag in the first half.They jumped ahead 15-4 following a 3-pointer by Embiid. Covington stripped Durant and hit a 3 to make it 37-18, electrifying the crowd.Durant’s dunk off Green’s alley-oop pass got the Warriors within 70-51 late in the second. But Embiid finished off the half with a dunk that sent the Sixers into the locker room up 74-52.“We have to focus, we have to take care of the ball and handle our defensive assignments,” Simmons said.TIME-OUT TIMES TWO CPP denies ‘Ka Diego’ arrest caused ‘mass panic’ among S. Tagalog NPA Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa “We take everybody’s best shot every night but they fight and fortunately we turned it around,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said.Joel Embiid scored 21 points and Ben Simmons had 23 points and 12 assists for Philadelphia, which led 47-28 after one quarter and 74-52 at the half.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutBut the Warriors erased that large deficit with a furious rally in the third quarter. Curry’s 3-pointer got them within one point. He then made a pair of free throws to give Golden State a 90-89 lead.The two-time NBA MVP hit another 3 and Draymond Green blew past a defender for a dunk to make it 99-89 going into the fourth. UP NEXTWarriors: Continue their four-game road trip Sunday afternoon at Brooklyn.76ers: Host Utah on Monday night. Golden State Warriors’ Stephen Curry, left, goes up for the shot with Philadelphia 76ers’ Robert Covington, right, defending during the first half of an NBA basketball game Saturday, Nov. 18, 2017, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Chris Szagola)PHILADELPHIA (AP) — A 22-point halftime deficit was no big deal for the defending NBA champions.Stephen Curry scored 35 points, Kevin Durant had 27 and the Golden State Warriors rallied for a 124-116 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers on Saturday night.ADVERTISEMENT Stronger peso trims PH debt value to P7.9 trillion View commentslast_img read more

Ravi Shastri reveals why Virat Kohli did not play Asia Cup 2018

first_imgTeam India coach Ravi Shastri revealed on Tuesday why regular skipper Virat Kohli opted out of the 2018 Asia Cup, as Rohit Sharma led India to their record seventh continental title.”Virat needed this rest. Physically he is a bull. You can’t keep him out of the ground. And the thing with Virat is if he plays, then you know the level of intensity he brings. So it was a case of just mental fatigue, giving him a break, take your mind off cricket and then come back fresh”, he was quoted as saying by Gulf News.Shastri also added that others too might follow Kohli’s step to manage their workload.”And we will have to do it with a lot of other players. You know like Bumah (Jasprit Bumrah), Bhuvi (Bhuvneshwar Kumar), we have to sustain them and keep them energetic”, he added.Kohli will be back to lead the team again as Team India faces West Indies in a two-match Test series. There were two new faces in the 15-man squad, as Mayank Agarwal and Mohammed Siraj received their maiden Test call-ups.Pacer Ishant Sharma and all-rounder Hardik Pandya were not considered for selection due to injuries.READ – India vs West Indies: Mayank Agarwal, Mohammed Siraj earn maiden Test call-ups”Taking stock of the recent workload, the selectors have decided to rest Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar Kumar. Both Ishant Sharma and Hardik Pandya were not considered for selection as they are yet to recover from their injuries,” BCCI had said in a statement announcing the squad.advertisementShikhar Dhawan was a notable absentee, as Dinesh Karthik and Karun Nair too were not named. Dhawan managed a total of 162 from eight innings on the tour of England. His highest score, 44, came in India’s winning cause, but that too in relaxed circumstances. Dhawan had starts throughout the series, without never looking like he was set for a big one. Not only the scores of 1,3 in the final Test.READ – We know the Indian conditions and know how to go about our job: Ajinkya RahaneSenior India spinner Harbhajan Singh questioned some of the selections for the West Indies series.”This is a mystery that needs to be solved. How can a person sitting on the bench for three months become so bad that he is not good enough to remain in the squad,” Harbhajan told PTI.READ – Harbhajan finding it hard to understand the parameters for selecting national teamHarbhajan Singh was also not pleased with Rohit’s continued absence from the team. He took to twitter to question the move, saying, “No Rohit in Test team against West Indies. What are the selectors thinking actually? Anyone have a clue? Please let me know as I can’t digest this.”last_img read more

The Suns Get Whistled More Than A High School Gym Class

This NBA season has produced more than its fair share of ridiculous, eye-popping statistics. Russell Westbrook got his record-tying 41st triple-double of the season on Tuesday. The Rockets shattered the league record for threes made in a single campaign with two weeks left to play. And 20-year-old Devin Booker, who’d never even scored 40 points in a contest before, somehow logged 70 points in one game last month.But Booker’s team is on the cusp of crossing a less-than-ideal threshold as things wind down: The Phoenix Suns, who lead the NBA in fouls by a wide margin with 1,963 so far, are on pace to eclipse the 2,000-foul mark, which would make them the first NBA club to hit that mark in 10 years.The Suns commit 25 fouls per game (the NBA average is 20) and send their opponents to the free-throw line an NBA-high 29 times a night. It isn’t necessarily a new problem, since Phoenix allowed opponents to go to the stripe more than anyone last season, too. But the team’s fouls are up 10 percent from last year, and the team is becoming a bit of an outlier by fouling more often, given that NBA foul rates have decreased over the past decade as more and more shooters space the floor, leading to less contact from play to play.The chronic fouling is a symptom of two much larger issues: 1. The team’s inability to contain their opponents on defense, where the Suns allow 109 points per 100 plays, third-worst in the league. Being that bad leaves their players out of position, often leading to more desperate fouls as they try to recover. And 2. Phoenix’s relative youth and inexperience, especially in the post, where it’s fairly common for players to struggle with foul trouble at the beginning of their careers.This talented group is still developing, both physically and mentally. The Suns are one of the NBA’s shortest and lightest teams, which might make them a bit easier to push around. But Phoenix — which last month used the youngest starting five in NBA history — also has plenty to learn when it comes to countering the offensive tricks and techniques that veteran players acquire over the years.“You ever seen a young group of guys play against a group of older guys in pickup? The older guys somehow manage to physically take advantage of the younger guys without making it look like that’s what they’re doing. Then the young guy starts to hit back, and it’s completely obvious? That’s what we look like sometimes,” coach Earl Watson told me last week during his club’s East Coast trip. “Players in this league are so good, and our guys are still learning how to be aggressive without committing obvious fouls.”Those gaps in experience are most apparent in scenarios where a single defender is being asked to hold his own: 1-on-1s and post-ups. The Suns have committed the second- and fourth-highest rates of shooting fouls this season when guarding 1-on-1s and post-ups, respectively,1Phoenix has been whistled for shooting fouls 14 percent of the time in isolation scenarios and about 15 percent of the time when guarding post-up opportunities. according to Synergy Sports.It’s hard to fault the players’ intent, despite the dismal results. They often sacrifice their bodies in hopes of forcing a turnover, but many times they haven’t established good enough positioning to ward off defensive-foul calls. This has been especially true of some young players, like Booker, rookie power forward Marquese Chriss and fourth-year center Alex Len, who are 1-of-18, 5-of-28 and 0-of-14 when it comes drawing charge calls this season. (Those numbers are pretty abysmal, considering that the leaguewide average charge rate is 40 percent.)Phoenix’s learning curve has gotten considerably steeper in recent weeks, since the Suns elected to shut down a handful of healthy veteran players, including usual starters Eric Bledsoe and Tyson Chandler, in pursuit of some lottery ping-pong balls and a chance to give their younger, less-used talent some spin over the final month of a losing season.That has meant fielding lineups that have little institutional knowledge of how to defend without fouling.“If I’m the only young guy out there with four veterans, those four can kind of direct traffic and help cover for me when I mess up,” said Chriss, who commits 5.5 fouls per 36 minutes, tied for the NBA’s fourth-highest rate among players who’ve logged at least 1,000 minutes.2He’s tied with Len. “But when it’s a situation where everybody on the floor is, at most, 3 or 4 years into their career, that’s kind of tough, because then we’re all kind of lost, and still learning how to communicate with each other as players.”It’s not just an issue of youth. There are several other, less-examined factors that help explain why they’ve committed so many fouls. Phoenix plays at a blistering pace, handling more possessions than most, which puts the team in a position to commit more fouls than any other club. The Suns have been in more close games where they trailed late than any other team, meaning a decent number of their infractions were likely intentional and committed in hopes of stopping the clock. And it’s worth noting that Phoenix also comfortably leads the NBA in offensive fouls. So, not every foul Phoenix commits is a symptom of the Suns’ weak defense.Make no mistake, though: The Suns do an absolute ton of hacking, and they usually get called for it.“Refs officiate games with a certain rhythm. They’re used to a certain speed and rhythm. When you jump out of that rhythm, it’s easy for them to see, and you’re going to get called for it,” said Chandler, an NBA champion who joined the league as a teenager and went from committing more than 5 fouls per 36 minutes in his fifth season to eventually winning Defensive Player of the Year. Chandler added that the Suns, much like he was as a youngster, are often overeager to make a play, and wind up swiping or jumping when they shouldn’t.Nevertheless, struggles and all, Watson is an eternal optimist. He takes ample time most days to walk through film of the team’s fouling tendencies, and he told me that he feels his team is only a reinforcement or two away from a huge turnaround if the young players keep developing.“I was with OKC during Russ’s first year” — Westbrook, of course — “and I always let [my Phoenix players] know: That year, [the Thunder] won 23 games. The next year they won 50, and did it because their young guys had gotten so much experience and developed a supreme confidence.”Phoenix may not go on to write the kind of success story that the Thunder did, at least not next season. But if putting in a year at the School of Hard Knocks helps this team improve on defense, maybe the Suns will eventually be able to say that this furious foul pace was a worthwhile learning experience.Check out our NBA predictions. read more

Mens Soccer Buckeyes travel to Ann Arbor to take on No 21

Ohio State men’s soccer head coach Brian Maisonneuve watches the Buckeyes play in the first half of the game against the University of South Florida on Sept. 7, 2018. Credit: Casey Cascaldo | Photo EditorComing off a 0-0 draw at home against Northwestern on Friday while playing nearly half the game down a man, the Ohio State men’s soccer team  (1-5-2, 0-1-1 Big Ten) heads to Ann Arbor, Michigan, to take on the Wolverines (5-1-1, 1-0-1 Big Ten) on Tuesday. Ohio State redshirt senior midfielder Brady Blackwell said even though Ohio State’s battles with Michigan are mostly noted on the gridiron, the rivalry transcends all sports between the two schools. “I think everyone comes here because they know about the rivalry in football obviously, but I think it carries over to every single sport, so we’re not very fond of them,” Blackwell said. “They don’t really like us very much.” The Wolverines come into this week ranked No. 21 in the nation, according to the United Soccer Coaches Poll, and are on a six-game unbeaten streak following their only loss of the season, at home to Tulsa on Aug. 24.Michigan is a team that is both effective and dangerous on offense. The Wolverines have outscored their opponents 15-5 on the season while outshooting them 101-48. The Wolverines’ attack is spearheaded by sophomore forward Umar Farouk Osman’s four goals and two assists, combined with eight points apiece from junior forward Jack Hallahan and sophomore forward Mohammed Zakyi.Meanwhile, the Wolverines are just as strong between the pipes, with sophomore goalkeeper Henry Mashburn currently holding a 0.68 goals against average for the season, accompanied by four clean sheets.“Michigan’s very good this year, very athletic, tough and they get after you,” Ohio State head coach Brian Maisonneuve said. “It’s going to be a battle and we’re going to have to match their fight because you know they’re going to come out a hundred miles per hour.”Maisonneuve said that a top concern of his is how his players will recover on such short rest following the tough double-overtime battle against the Wildcats Friday night in Columbus. “The hardest part about double overtime on Friday is we’ve got to turn around and do it on Tuesday, so it’s going to be a really quick turnaround,” Maisonneuve said. “Managing bodies is going to be the No. 1 thing.”With eight games under their belt, a new coaching staff and system and a whole lot of soccer left to be played, the Buckeyes seem to be settling in.The defense rebounded from a tough outing at Penn State last weekend to shut out Northwestern on Friday despite being a man down, while the offense played its most effective game of the season last time out. The Buckeyes and Wolverines are set to play in Ann Arbor at 7 p.m. on Tuesday. read more