Tim Howard for Secretary of Defense!
As most of us saw yesterday, Tim Howard, the goalkeeper for the United States Men’s National Team, gave the performance of a lifetime as he made 16 saves, the new record for a World Cup match. He was named man of the match despite the United States defeat. Without his relentless defense in this match, it is safe to say that the US would have had no chance at all against the Belgian’s lightning quick strikes against the goal. As a result, the wonderful people who edit the online crowdsourced encyclopedia known as Wikipedia decided it was time to nominate a new Secretary of Defense.
For a brief amount of time yesterday, Tim Howard took his position as Secretary of Defense according to Wikipedia. Even Jimmy Wales, the founder of Wikipedia, approved of this message, tweeting, “ I do NOT APPROVE of vandalizing Wikipedia for comedic effect. But this is exquisite: http://ftw.usatoday.com/2014/07/tim-howard-wikipedia-united-states-secretary-of-defense.”
On a more practical note though, could Tim Howard actually qualify for this office? Let’s do a little compare and contrast between him and the actual Secretary of Defense, Chuck Hagel.
Tim Howard’s life has went like any other professional soccer player. He worked his way up through the ranks playing for various clubs, and eventually made it into the MLS. During his time with the New York/New Jersey Metro Stars, he became the youngest player to win the MLS Goalkeeper of the Year award, and let them to being in position for first place at the time of his departure. Halfway through the 2003 season, Manchester United paid a $4 million transfer fee in order to sign Howard. After being named in the PFA Best XI after his first season, he started poorly in his next season and eventually moved to Everton in the 2007 season. He is still signed with them and will play there until the end of the 2018 season.
What most people don’t know, however, is that Howard is also a star on the basketball court. He averaged 15 points a game on his high school team and even made an appearance on the Harlem Globetrotters during 2009. He remains only one of two soccer players to ever be drafted by them.
On the other side, Chuck Hagel served as State Senator for Nebraska from 1997 to 2009. He was an infantry squad leader in the Vietnam War, where he received two Purple Hearts, an Army Commendation Medal, and the Vietnamese Gallantry Cross. As inspiring as this is, he is also the only person to be filibustered before taking office, because the Senate Republicans stated that the final vote needed further review. Disconcerting as this might be, Hagel has been able to make his new position flourish, as he has pushed forward new legislation to make the Department of Defense open to same-sex benefits, drafted an Arctic strategy for the Pentagon, and has put effort into the Russian crises that have happening as of late.
While Hagel definitely did not cost $4 million for the Cabinet to hire, he seems to be fit for the job. He was not able to defend the Belgians against scoring more goals than they did, and he might not have even been in attendance at the match yesterday. Will he help keep our country safe? Most likely. But of course none of that matters, because the USMNT elimination from the World Cup remains a national focus.
Tim Howard might be able to job share with Chuck Hagel in the near future, but hopefully the new presidential candidate come 2016 will realize Howard’s ability to help our country.