It's exciting to see that several Hesperia school sports teams have ended their regular seasons as league champs. And some are still in contention in C.I.F. competition.


Altogether there were seven league championship teams from Hesperia: Sultana High wrestling, Hesperia High boys basketball, Sultana High girls basketball, Sultana High girls soccer and Hesperia High boys soccer. Both the Hesperia Christian boys and girls basketball teams won the Agape Christian League.


Congratulations to the champs!


***


It was sad to see that Stevie Wright of Phelan didn't make the cut down to 12 on "American Idol." The hopes of the Victor Valley rested on the shoulders of the talented 16-year-old. Despite an admirable showing, the Serrano High student didn't get the votes needed from the public to move on in the competition.


***


My commentary on Rush Limbaugh provoked an unusually large amount of web comments. Most of those who criticized my commentary, which were many, seemed to believe that I am either an ardent fan of Limbaugh (and a vociferous critic of Obama) or the other way around. The truth is somewhere in between.


For the record, I was a huge fan of Limbaugh in the late 1980s, when he first came to KFI radio, through the mid-1990s. During those first several years, he was extremely entertaining, played lots of zany tunes, and expressed a conservative view unlike anyone before him. Increasingly I became less interested in his show, however, and around 2000 he sounded sluggish, and the clever use of music began to disappear. It turned out Limbaugh had become dependent on prescription drugs, and he was losing his sense of hearing.


During President Bush's two terms in office, Limbaugh had to defend questionable decisions. Gone were inspiring phrases such as "rugged individualism." He rarely pumped up conservatism, instead, it seemed, he was always sniping at the opposition. The fun went out of his show.


It's ironic, but I believe that the election of President Obama actually creates fertile ground for the conservative movement to be revived. Limbaugh and other conservatives are articulating their beliefs with more passion than they have in years.


Regarding President Obama, my feelings are probably fairly similar to those of TV personality Ben Stein. Recently Stein expressed his concern over Obama's handling of the country's economic crisis. However, Stein said, he was extremely proud to see a black man elected to the highest office in the land. I share those sentiments.


Will my explanation lessen criticism? Probably not. It comes with the territory.


***


Speaking of my commentary, I received a card from Albert Alioto of San Francisco. He said he read my column in the Burlingame Daily News. Apparently the publication picked it up on either the Knight-Ridder Tribune or AP news services.


Mr. Alioto wrote that the "Barack The Magic Negro" parody is actually directed at Al Sharpton. Thanks for pointing that out, Mr. Alioto.