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Tuesday, June 5, 2018

The Political Death of Sports in America

This morning I posted a brief article about how I’m finished with the Eagles after this White House affair. I’m done with players putting themselves above the fans who pay their salaries. We don’t ask for much…be nice if we see you out in public. Represent our city well. STAND for the anthem, just like we all do. And when you get the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to meet the president and have him honor OUR CITY…you go. Even if you have to hold your nose…you go.
After posting that article, I’ve been lambasted by Philly fans and told “bye” about a thousand times.
Because I disagree politically.
Is that how you REALLY feel? Do you REALLY want only fans who agree with you politically? Do you really want people who were born in Philly, grew up there, and hold it in their hearts as home, no matter where they live, to stop being fans of our team because they don’t vote as you vote, or support what you support? Is that REALLY how you feel? When I support Philly causes, and send money for Philly charities, you want me to stop doing that because I don't line up with you across the board? Is that really what you want. Do you want to only go to games at the Linc where the people surrounding you all share the same thinking, the same voting, the same ideology? Really? You're okay with sports descending into that level? Because I'm not. Sports gives us a small window -maybe a few hours-- where we cannot have to think about those things...because we think about those things almost non-stop. We can cheer for one common team and one common love for our city. Now even THAT is compromised. You're okay with that? Because I'm not. I might care how you vote or who you support every other day of the week, but when I go to an Eagles game or a Phillies Game or a Flyers game I don't care about that stuff. The Linc holds what...55000? You seriously think every one of them holds YOUR ideology? Or Chris Long's? Or Malcom Jenkins'? Does it bother you that not every single seat is filled by a Trump hating liberal? Or is that the one place and the one time when those things don't matter? Because that's what it is to me. You're good with taking that away too?
And I'M intolerant??

Goodbye Eagles...

Sports used to unite us. They used to be the one place where we could forget the unrest and turbulence of the world and just cheer for our boys, and our town. There wasn't a Republican section or a Democrat section or a liberal section or a conservative section. Just Home vs Visitor. Home. MY team. MY town. The stadium was hallowed, and other than church, it was maybe the only place you could cheer and get raucous and wildly passionate and nobody cared who you voted for or where you stood. Those things are important, but they are also heavy and wearisome. You need a place where you don't have to think about those things for a while. A place where you can feel good after a win, or find camaraderie after a loss, and nobody cared which party you were registered to or where you stood on an issue. They cared about which color jersey you cheered for, not what color your skin is. They argued about who was the better QB...not who was the better president. Now...we can't even have that anymore. Making millions of dollars isn't enough. Adulation isn't enough. A dream life isn't enough. You have to steal a moment that fans have waited to have for an entire lifetime. The same fans who make that life of yours possible. You don't get it. You don't care that you don't get it. You've lost a true fan and a true voice, and, tragically, you've distanced yourself from someone who really understands what used to be so great about sports. Goodbye Eagles...