On June 28, Doug Robinson wrote that sports are important because “Sports unite across race, age, economic and gender lines. They unite communities … They provide a mostly healthy diversion, an emotional release” (“Why sports are so missed, and so important”).
While sports has traditionally been devoid of politics and social cause, people of all types and all political persuasions could sit side-by-side and cheer on their favorite teams together — and could enjoy a diversion (for a few hours) from the issues of the community and nation. The only color fans cared about was the color of the jersey of their favorite teams.
Unfortunately, if the NBA allows, or promotes, players to display “social justice” messages on their uniforms, or if the NFL reverses course and allows players and coaches to disrespect the national anthem, then sports will no longer be free of politics, will no longer be something that “unites people,” and therefore, sports in general, will no longer be as important or even needed as it once was.
If sports turn into another soapbox for politics or pushing social agendas, then I will find other events and activities that can provide an enjoyable diversion from the issues of the day.