Tuesday, May 29, 2012
Sports Fans and Referees
Perhaps you’ve noticed as I have that a lot of people deep into sports, knowing all about the players, statistics, history and standings, are less into issues and problems in society such as corruption, abuse, environmental degradation, addiction and poverty. They tend to poo poo those social things as pesky perpetual annoyances that will always be there and that no one can do anything about anyway. As if all the energy and passion they pour into sports can affect the outcome of the game.
Of course it’s possible to be a sports fan and still contribute to dealing with the issues and problems in society. It doesn’t have to be either sports or society; it can be both sports and society. It’s just that it tends not to be both sports and society. It tends to be either sports or society for a large majority of white males and for white women too, as equality spreads, to them [They are now equal opportunity drunks as well].
What if all that energy and passion people pour into sports was devoted to building community, helping one another and addressing the issues and problems in society? Would we find ways to convert the issues and problems in society to opportunities for growth, cooperation and community? I think we would. What if only a quarter, 25%, all that energy and passion people pour into sports was devoted to building community, helping one another and addressing the issues and problems in society? We’d still find new ways to convert the issues and problems in society to opportunities for growth, cooperation and community, wouldn’t we? Again, it’s not about either sports or community, but both sports and community.
Also, many sports fans tend to be laissez fare or against government. They’re with Reagan that government is the problem, that government at all levels is too, big, and we’d be better off without government. OK, consider this, sports fans, what would your favorite game be like without a referee…? Or with a corrupt ref, or with a ref who favored one side, or a ref who was a ref but didn’t believe refers were really necessary? What would happen to the game then?
If nothing else, government has the role of ref in society. But since Reagan and as we move toward the TParty view, we have refs—people running government, who don’t believe in refs and don’t think refs are really necessary. So, what’s happening to the game without refs? Look around you: craziness, absurdity, irrationality. The game is falling apart. The extreme fans are on the field, breaking all the rules. No refs, no game.