Bill Ritter's daily take on the news.

March 26, 2012 12:57:59 PM PDT
They say in the end, it's a blink of an eye.

That's songwriter Jackson Browne's take on death.

But it could also refer to life.

And there's nothing like taking a college tour with your high school junior of a son to understand that the trip from nursery school to college is a fast track journey.

I spent last week thinking about that high-speed trek, watching my 16-year-old man-child drink in the tours and admissions talks and impressions of various institutions of higher education.

What an exciting notion - spending four years absorbing and learning and trying to figure things out.

That's the overriding take away for me, although it's tempered a bit by the all-too-real specter facing college students today: What do I do after college?

It's not something people-of-a-certain-age thought of much, mostly because it wasn't so depressing to think about it. But it's a cruel, jobless world out there for college students, and the possibility is more than a little real that when they get out they'll be well educated, in debt, and ready to find a job at the nearest fast-food drive through. If there are any openings.

Still, hope springs eternal during college tours in the spring. And at one university, I felt it down deep. It's the campus my dad had attended back in the depression. He had so much wanted to become a doctor. But after one year, the tuition and room and board were simply too much for my grandparents to afford. He was summoned back home to work in his father's business. He never went back to college.

I thought of my dad - and how proud he would be - to see his grandson touring the university he had to leave because his family couldn't afford it.

So with my week off behind me, and with college tour phase one over, we move on to tonight's 11 p.m. newscast.

We're also following the latest developments in the case that has sparked a nationwide controversy - the fatal shooting of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in Florida. New accounts now coming out that the neighborhood watch man who shot Martin, George Zimmerman, was hit by Martin, and knocked to the ground. According to this account - which police reportedly knew right after that fateful night in February - Martin was on top of Zimmerman, hitting him.

What happened right before this that led to all this happening - we don't exactly know. We do know that Zimmerman had "called in" a report of Martin walking through the neighborhood, and that the 9-1-1 dispatchers asked Zimmerman to stay away from Martin. We also know Zimmerman didn't follow that advice.

We also know that Zimmerman managed to pull out his gun and shoot Martin.

Now there's nationwide outrage, and support by all sorts of people wearing "hoodies."

So many questions about this case, and so many answers yet to be uncovered. Tonight, with this latest news, the question is obvious: Why didn't police release all this beforehand? And why didn't the police chief of Sanford talk about all this when he was forced to resign for not arresting Zimmerman ? who still remains free? Did Martin feel threatened by Zimmerman? Did Zimmerman feel threatened by Martin?

The Mayor of Sanford said today that his city is "like a tinder box." Officials are worried. We'll have the latest at 11.

And Tim Tebow makes quite an entrance in New York. The latest Jet getting introduced at a full-coverage news conference. Lemme see if I can understand this: A backup quarterback gets treated like a star? And the Jets now have two of the lowest ranked quarterbacks in the league? Does none of that matter? Maybe it's because they're both among the best looking quarterbacks that they're getting all this attention?

I'm just sayin'.

Nonetheless, we'll have the latest on Tebow's grand entrance, at 11.

And our Jamie Roth tonight has some common sense - but seldom listened-to advice about what to do with your income tax refund, if you get one.

My favorite quote in her story is the expert advice about paying off credit cards - because sending your refund to the credit card company, he says, is like investing it at 18 or 24 percent, tax free. And "even Bernie Madof couldn't promise a return like that."

We'll also have any breaking news of the night, plus Meteorologist Lee Goldberg's AccuWeather forecast, and Rob Powers with the night's sports. I hope you can join Sade Baderinwa and me, tonight at 11.


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