From politics to sports, last week was eventful

Published 2:47 am Tuesday, November 11, 2008

By By Lowell McGill
The election, politics, sports and a couple of opinions are the sources for this week’s column.
Many years ago before TV came on the scene we would gather in front of Rex Sporting Goods on North Main Street to get election results. A huge chalk board was used to post the winners of local, county, state and national races. Tony Albert was in charge of posting the returns as all of us anxiously awaited the outcome to see winners names written on the big board.
Unlike today, national and local networks give us the outcomes before all the votes are counted.
One of my main concerns in this past election is how it may affect Mobile getting the Northrop Grumman tanker contract. You remember we initially received the contract but it was later taken away. I, and several others, believe that politics may have been a factor in our losing out on it. Only time will tell.
One bright aspect on NG came this week from a remark made during a Mobile television report by U.S. House of Representatives 7th District Congressman Artur Davis. He said he was backing the Mobile contract and would do all in his power to see that it comes to Mobile. He also said in that interview that it was his belief president-elect Obama was not on the side of Northrop Grumman. Davis, who reportedly is being strongly considered for an Obama cabinet post, said he was not in agreement with Obama on this issue. He said he would work very hard for the contract to be awarded to Mobile. Several news sources indicate Obama is close with Boeing, the NG competitor.
On the other hand, McCain said in one of his TV statements that he was not in favor of the contract as it was initially awarded. So, it really apparently doesn’t matter who won the election, politics will be evident on either side.
I hope the Congressman will be selected to serve in Obama’s cabinet. As I have written so many times before we need for Mobile to land those many jobs that will come with the contract. Many of us remember Brookley Field, the proposed site for the tanker operation. We cherish our many friends and relatives who worked there for so many years.
Some news sources report there may be an effort to offer a split contract. If this is the case both Boeing and Northrop Grumman would each receive equal contracts. I suppose 50 percent of something is better than 100 percent of nothing. Let’s hope the issue is settled soon, not for the sake of jobs, but for the safety of our servicemen who fly those outdated tanker planes.
By the way, Robert Gibbs is expected to be named Obama Press Secretary according to Birmingham news writer Robert K. Gordon. The Auburn native has worked for the Obama campaign since 2004. Gibbs is regarded as a very bright and up and coming individual. He graduated from Auburn High School in 1989 and has been involved in politics since graduation, sources said.
As for the political aspect of the election, I observed some surprises. One unexpected surprise was the hit taken in California by supporters of gay marriages. Voters in Florida and Arizona also took the same position as California to ban such marriages. Even as I write this column today, street demonstrations by these groups are on going, particular in California. The demonstrations reportedly began immediately after learning the results of the election in those states. Green states were also non-factors in the election.
Speaking of California, this state will also take a big hit this upcoming bowl season. Can’t you just see highly regarded USC pitted against an apparent weaker Big 10 college football opponent in the Rose Bowl?
This has to be a big disappointment for Brent Musburger and Kirk Herbstreit. These two TV football broadcasters appear to be in sheer misery over the Crimson Tide’s rise to glory. In fact, the duo seems obsessed with one loss teams being better than teams like Alabama with no losses. You can also include those two CBS sportscasters in the same vein. I am sure that the Crimson Tide, which is soaring higher than the interest rate when Carter left office, realizes they control their own destiny and could care less about remarks and news articles by partisan sports announcers and writers.
Locally, there is some more positive news this week for the Creek Indians. Mississippi officials stated casinos in that state recently took a loss in gaming revenue. A Mobile TV station reported some local and area casino participants found the Creek Entertainment Center much closer and more accessible. The Creeks, I am sure, welcome this news in light of their gaming project nearing completion. Again, I am not endorsing gambling, but it is here and you and I have no control over it and it is good to know employment at this establishment will have a brighter future.
Last week, I asked a question about the nearest CC Camp back in the 1930s and 1940s. Three emails from out of town and two local residents identified Little River State Park as the correct answer. Lenora Sellers told me she remembered the camp as did Ollie Strength. I remember a camp just south of Bay Minette. It seems only just a few years ago those old barracks were still standing and could be seen on the left as you traveled south of Bay Minette on Hwy. 31.
I have an upcoming column on “Aid &Attendance”, a veterans benefit that possibly some of you are not aware of. I have been researching it and hope to have it ready very soon. You’ll be pleased to learn of some benefits that could prove very helpful in your older age.
Lowell McGill is a historical columnist for The Atmore Advance. He can be reached at

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