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Mixing politics and sports

CaptRenault

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Jun 30, 2003
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This column (below) describes how some announcers and commentators sermonized about politics during the broadcast of a minor, early-season college football game on ESPN. Of course, all the broadcasters parroted all the "woke," left-wing, BLM-approved viewpoints (they knew they would be fired if they didn't).

Leftist politics have been injected into sports broadcasts and sports news shows more and more since the start of the nationwide left-wing riots in May. The worst cases of this kind of intrusion of politics into sports are the NBA, the NFL, and MLB to some extent. As this column points out, the trend has spread to college football. No sport seems immune--even F1 broadcasters have to pay lip service to the BLM cause. Not surprisingly, it seems like the more black athletes participating in a sport, the more that broadcasters feel obliged to prattle on about "systemic racism," and diversity, equity and ”inclusion.”

I can tolerate some of this nonsense but at a certain point, I tune out completely. I haven't watched any NBA games and I won't be watching NFL games. I still watch some MLB but not much.

In contrast, watching the Tour de France has provided much welcomed relief from the constant drumbeat of BLM propaganda in other broadcast sports. Maybe the NBCSports announcers have said something about politics during the broadcasts but not much-bravo to them!

I had already learned to live without sports during the suspension of all sports events this spring. Now that sports are back in some form, I'm finding that I can still get by just fine without the ones that have become overly politicized. In fact, if ESPN were not the broadcaster of F1, I would cancel my YouTube TV subscription and subscribe to some other service that doesn't include ESPN.

In sum I don't give a damn what the athletes or the announcers think about politics. Most of them ( athletes and announcers) are poorly educated, ignorant, uninteresting, unthinking, one-dimensional people who would be afraid to ever express an opinion that goes against the prevailing "woke," leftist ideology or to criticize BLM and Antifa rioters. If they want to post their opinions on Twitter, fine. But I wish they would all just shut up about politics most of the time.

WILL ESPN SPOIL COLLEGE FOOTBALL FOR CONSERVATIVES?
POSTED ON SEPTEMBER 7, 2020 BY PAUL MIRENGOFF
powerlineblog.com


...College football players have every right to speak out about race and politics. ESPN announcers do too. But they shouldn’t do it during sports broadcasts, and certainly not while they are supposed to be calling a game.

I have zero interest in the non-football views of an ex-quarterback and a journeyman sportscaster. I should be able to watch a college football game without being subjected to their political and sociological musings.

Was the imposition of these views a Wischusen-Orlovsky thing or an ESPN thing? The latter, I think. ESPN has adopted something of a “no politics” policy. I don’t think these announcers would have riffed on politics without prior encouragement by the network to depart from policy.

I read that Kirk Herbstreit, one of ESPN’s lead college football commentators, broke down in tears during ESPN’s “College Game Day” show talking about how “the Black community is hurting” and the need for change. This is additional evidence that ESPN has ditched its “no politics” policy in the face of protests and rioting in our cities.

There’s plenty to cry about when it comes to the state of portions of the Black community, but the crying shame isn’t what Herbstreit thinks it is. That’s not surprising. Herbstreit has no expertise in this area. He is no more qualified to opine about race in America than the average man on the street.

Herbstreit is entitled, nonetheless, to say whatever he wants to about this matter, but he shouldn’t do so during broadcasts that are supposed to be about football. When he does, there’s every reason to tune him out.

If this weekend is any guide, I’ll be tuning out ESPN’s broadcasts of college football this season. And I’ll be tuning out college football entirely if, as seems very possible, the rot spreads to other networks.
 
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Longeldak

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Yes, definitely a huge nuisance. Tennis has not been immune either, unfortunately. Naomi Osaka keeps parroting the BLM bullshit any chance she gets. She is the highest paid female athlete ever and with her mother being Japanese and father Haitian, she could probably set up home anywhere in the world. And for some reason she still chose this terrible racist hellhole U.S.A., why is that?
 

CaptRenault

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Jun 30, 2003
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... Naomi Osaka keeps parroting the BLM bullshit any chance she gets. She is the highest paid female athlete ever and with her mother being Japanese and father Haitian, she could probably set up home anywhere in the world. And for some reason she still chose this terrible racist hellhole U.S.A., why is that?

Great points. If she lived in Japan and were not a famous athlete, then she would discover the true meaning of racism. A regular (I.e. non-famous) person with her racial mix would be an outcast in Japan. As for Haiti-most Haitians would leave that “paradise” for the U.S. or Canada if they could.
 
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hungry101

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I agree. I will not be lectured to by some sanctimonious, self-righteous, ex-jock. I’m done with the hypocrites in the NBA. You can put anything on the back of an NBA jersey but free Hong Kong? I’m done with the NFL too. I will watch golf and baseball but I almost quit baseball after Craig Monroe broke down in tears about racism. Niko Goodrum, a black player, said “I fear for my life when I drive to the stadium” and the commentators all shook their heads up in down in agreement.

How about this crazy idea? Don’t break the law and if you do break the law when the police tell you to stop you ought to comply?
 

Fradi

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I watch mostly European sports on foreign channels so there is not much of this going on.
When the commentary is not in English, French or my own language then I don’t know what they are talking about anyway.
I don’t miss commentary I know enough about the games I watch and the players.
I watch so many different kinds of sports, pretty much a sports fanatic. The NBA, NFL, baseball never interested me much, I always found college football more fun to watch, I do watch the NHL until the Habs are eliminated which now days sadly usually happens before the playoffs.
There should be no room for politics in sports. We get enough of that crap every time we turn on the news.
 
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Longeldak

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There should be no room for politics in sports. We get enough of that crap every time we turn on the news.
That sounds good in theory but is probably not achievable in real life. And then of course there are different kinds of politics. Do you remember the bloody hockey battles between the Czechs and the Russians after 1968? Or perhaps even the famous "Blood in the Water" water polo game in Melbourne in 1956? It is certainly better when they duke it out with pucks and balls rather than tanks in the streets.
 

GaryH

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I stopped watching ESPN years ago. Every show is politics. They fired Curt Schilling( who I never liked for other reasons) for retweeting a cartoon about the North Carolina bathroom issue, but continually made excuses for Jemele Hill when she made blatant political comments on air(which are supposedly against ESPN rules.)

I haven't watched any NBA playoffs this year. As I said in a different post, how do they justify wearing the BLM tee-shirts with the Nike swoosh while knowing of the accusations that Nike employs slave labor in their factories in China? And the NBA refuses to criticize China for their numerous civil rights violations. I don't believe the NBA believes in social justice. Money is what matters. Blood money.

And where was the outrage with NFL player DeSean Jackson's disgusting anti-semitic comments? Kareem Abdul-Jabbar spoke out - "No one is free until everyone is free". The NBA doesn't get it.
 

Fradi

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That sounds good in theory but is probably not achievable in real life. And then of course there are different kinds of politics. Do you remember the bloody hockey battles between the Czechs and the Russians after 1968? Or perhaps even the famous "Blood in the Water" water polo game in Melbourne in 1956? It is certainly better when they duke it out with pucks and balls rather than tanks in the streets.
I actually played waterpolo with some of those guys when they were older as most of them remained in Melbourne as you know your history and the reason. why. They recruited me to train me to be their goaltender. Hardest sport I ever played in my life only lasted 3 months and went back to what I was good at.
I guess I was never meant to be a fish.
You are correct politics always gets into the mix and I remember the tanks very well, they are hard to forget even as an infant.
 
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CaptRenault

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Wall Street Journal columnist Jason Riley (who happens to be black) perfectly describes what's wrong with the NFL (and other major sports) embracing the ideology of BLM and forcing it down the throats of its fans. The online Journal is behind a paywall, so here's the whole column:

Are You Ready for Some Political Football?
This year the NFL will penalize itself for past unnecessary roughness against Colin Kaepernick with a social-justice blitz.




Jason L. Riley
Sept. 8, 2020 WSJ.com

If you were counting on the start of the pro football season this week to offer some respite from a long hot summer of nasty politicking and violent street protests, don’t kid yourself. In an act of cowardice masquerading as wokeness, the National Football League has decided to follow its baseball and basketball counterparts and bow to Black Lives Matter activists.

In June, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell apologized for the league’s earlier hard-line stance against kneeling during the national anthem. Last week the league announced that it will pay obeisance by displaying social-justice slogans in end zones and playing the “black national anthem,” “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” before games. Players will be permitted not only to boycott “The Star-Spangled Banner” but to sit out entire games if they feel the need.

Even uniforms will showcase the higher consciousness of multimillionaire black athletes who want to lecture the rest of us on racial inequality. Players, coaches and referees “can choose either a name of a victim or one of four preferred phrases the NFL has approved: ‘Stop Hate’; ‘It Takes All Of Us’; ‘End Racism’; or ‘Black Lives Matter,’ ” according to the Associated Press. “Each week, the NFL will feature the story of a victim of social or racial injustice or police brutality and tell that person’s story ‘in and around’ the games, the league said.”
Football is America’s favorite spectator sport, and the NFL has determined that many fans are tuning in for the political theater, not just the touchdowns. If Mr. Goodell is wrong about that, he’ll find out soon enough. Average television viewership for regular season games fell to fewer than 15 million in 2017 from 18.7 million two years earlier, and the initial player protests led by Colin Kaepernick were cited as a factor in the dip. The audience has since increased, but the average number of viewers last year was still 2.2 million fewer than it was in 2015.

The broader issue is the transformation of professional sports and related news outlets into platforms for espousing the latest political fads. Some of us turn to sports to get away from politics. That’s harder to do when you’re forced to navigate through articles in the sports section on transgenderism or “jogging while black” just to find out how many runs Gerrit Cole gave up last night. I watch “SportsCenter” for the highlight reels, not for monologues on “systemic racism.” My 11-year-old subscribes to a tennis magazine, and the most recent issue featured an image of a balled fist on the cover. The kid just wants to read about tennis.

“The NFL stands with the black community,” Mr. Goodell said in defense of the new policies. But Black Lives Matter activists don’t represent the black community any more than white nationalists represent the white community. The black community wants more police officers in high-crime neighborhoods for protection. Black Lives Matter activists turn criminals into martyrs and lead rallies that call for defunding law enforcement. Mr. Goodell is indulging an extremely divisive group of activists who have a political agenda that is well to the left of most Americans, including most black Americans. Moreover, he’s decided that football fans should not be allowed to watch NFL games without having left-wing propaganda rubbed in their faces for three hours.

To the extent that the antipolice rhetoric has no basis in any empirical reality, Mr. Goodell and the NFL are also playing the role of the useful idiots. It is criminals who threaten black lives, not police officers, and focusing on police behavior instead of criminal behavior does nothing to help low-income blacks, who are the likeliest victims of violent crime.

According to Peter Moskos, a criminologist at John Jay College, policing has improved dramatically in recent decades and the biggest beneficiaries have been blacks. In a podcast interview last month with the economist Glenn Loury, Mr. Moskos said that efforts to reduce police resources would be counterproductive. He called the New York City Police Department, the nation’s largest, “arguably the best police department that America has seen.” It’s not perfect, he added, “but by any quantifiable measure, the NYPD does very well. By quantifiable measures, I mean arrests have been going down, crime has been going down, complaints against police have been going down—that’s important in the current context—and use of lethal force is very low.”

Mr. Moskos provides facts and context, while the media specializes in anecdotes and unrepresentative viral videos. It’s no wonder so many people believe police shootings are commonplace when in fact they are a tiny percentage of all shootings and have fallen steadily over the past 40 years. In the name of helping blacks, the NFL is helping activists spread misinformation.
 
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hungry101

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We need to have a GT at that course. Can you get me on?
 
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thegreatwalooo

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We need to have a GT at that course. Can you get me on?

I wish I could Hungry. It's so difficult to get a tee time that coordinating a time would be next to impossible. I can get on the course as a walk up or if someone cancels the night before. And just a heads up, it's not a fun course to play. You have to walk it, the fairways are as narrow as a street, and the rough is so thick you can loose a ball in it that bounces just off the fairway. I play the course because it humbles me and shooting in the 90's is not an easy task.
 

GaryH

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I watch mostly European sports on foreign channels so there is not much of this going on.
When the commentary is not in English, French or my own language then I don’t know what they are talking about anyway.
I don’t miss commentary I know enough about the games I watch and the players.
I watch so many different kinds of sports, pretty much a sports fanatic. The NBA, NFL, baseball never interested me much, I always found college football more fun to watch, I do watch the NHL until the Habs are eliminated which now days sadly usually happens before the playoffs.
There should be no room for politics in sports. We get enough of that crap every time we turn on the news.
Fradi - about a month ago MLS soccer players from FC Dallas and Nashville SC were booed by fans for kneeling ahead of that night’s game — a reaction one defender called “absolutely disgusting.” “I think it was absolutely disgusting,” Dallas defender Reggie Cannon said after the match, Sky Sports reported. “You’ve got fans booing you for people taking a stand for what they believe in.” Yeah but here's the thing Reggie -the fans also have the right to take a stand for what they believe in. Fans have rights also.
http://instagr.am/p/CD00Ot2g82s/
 
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CaptRenault

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Another columnist, Jason Whitlock (who also happens to be black), writes about teams and players showing support for the Marxist political movement known as BLM:

CHIEFS FANS SMART TO BOO, TEXANS AND DOLPHINS SMART TO DISAVOW ‘EMPTY’ BLM GESTURES
by JASON WHITLOCK
outkick.com

The booing you heard at Arrowhead Stadium Thursday night isn’t hard to understand.

Black Lives Matter is toxic and divisive.

...Chiefs fans aren’t stupid. They’re informed, passionate and fearless. They love Patrick Mahomes, Andy Reid, Travis Kelce and Tyreek Hill. But they love their country more than the foolish players who have swallowed Black Lives Matter’s ideology, propaganda and vision for America.

Social media and the athletes addicted to Twitter and Instagram define BLM as a long-overdue fight for racial equality. Many Americans see BLM for exactly what it is — a clever disguise for Marxists and anarchists who seek to destroy American freedoms — and those citizens are growing more comfortable expressing their disdain for the BLM movement.

The booing you heard rejected BLM, not unity. The booing you heard rejected the rioting, looting, violence and in-your-face harassment associated with the BLM movement.

...
It’s not difficult to understand why the so-called “moment of unity” triggered Chiefs fans. Unifying under the BLM umbrella is the equivalent of unifying at a Klan rally. No dice. No way. There are far better umbrellas.

We can start with sports. Sports, football in particular, have been a moment of American unity for nearly a hundred years. Jesse Owens sparked a moment at the 1936 Berlin Olympics when he slayed Hitler’s Aryan superiority myth. Joe Louis ignited a moment when he knocked out German heavyweight Max Schmeling. Jackie Robinson birthed an entire movement when he integrated Major League Baseball.

With their performance and excellence, Jesse, Joe and Jackie harnessed the power of sports to promote unity and equality. Jim Brown, Bill Russell, Muhammad Ali and Arthur Ashe stood on the shoulders of Jesse, Joe and Jackie and carried sports’ unification power to the next level.

Sports don’t need Black Lives Matter to promote unity or equality. Football sure as hell doesn’t. Football players and football fans have been putting their differences aside and coming together to cheer, jeer and support Walter Payton, Joe Montana, Tom Brady, Lawrence Taylor, Peyton Manning and Deion Sanders for decades. America’s pastime embraced and celebrated a workforce that’s 70 percent black a long time ago...
 

Fradi

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This has been going on for quite sometime at the olympics also first with fists in the air.
Then you had the even worse shootings of Israeli athletes in the 1972 Munich held olympics.

I don’t watch sports to listen to any kind of political crap from either side or any side.
When you step on the playing field you should leave that behind, there is plenty of it on every news channel and all actors awards ceremonies if that is what interests you.
Perhaps if all these millionaire athletes were told to keep to sports or be banned from it they would act different.
I don’t have a problem with them saying what ever the fuck they want once they are off the playing field their private life is their own.
As a fan I want them to shut the fuck up and play to their best ability that is what fans pay for.
 
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GaryH

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Wow another great article posted by CaptRenault. It is simple to understand and actually makes sense. Unlike alot of protestors who can't really articulate what they hope to accomplish.

Well said Fradi. This is the way most fans feel. Kudos to the Miami Dolphins team who said they wouldn't participate in meaningless gestures. The American football players get a whole week off in the season. . They could hold a rally in their home city and give all the speeches they wanted to bring people together. But that's extra effort and their personal time is too precious. Is it any wonder that a recent Gallup Poll showed decliing interest in sports?"

"More people have a negative view of pro sports than a positive one, as public support for America’s athletics industry plummeted amid the coronavirus pandemic and athletes’ backing of the Black Lives Matter movement, a new survey released Monday reveals.

Americans who have a positive view of sports dropped from 45 percent positive in August 2019 to 30 percent last month, the Gallup poll found.
The number of citizens who had a negative view shot up from 25 percent last year to 40 percent in August 2020.
That’s a shift of 30 points — from a plus 20 percent positive rating to a minus 10 percent negative rating"

https://newstalk870.am/gallup-poll-confirms-sports-industry-image-plunges/
 
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Mlle Bijou

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Sep 25, 2006
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Is social justice considered politics?

I personally think anyone with a platform and whose voice is heard, has a responsibility to step up for injustice. But I think there is a difference between social justice and politics in general.

I do think that people who are in a position that enables them to be mostly immune to injustice and don't use their power to stand in solidarity lack integrity. If they don't care because they are lucky enough to not personally be affected, they're pathetic.

If they recognize it and see injustice but stay silent for fear of upsetting people, they are even worse cowards.

I don't think it means going on and on about it when people are there for sports but I do think that acts like taking a knee, which is a silent personal act that doesn't require any explanation and can just be ignored if you're not interested or disagree.


I mean, they sign the freaking anthem before games, how can you say there should be no politics in sports. There already is. Get rid of the anthem, then maybe it's possible to argue your point.


"You can't be neutral on a moving train." - Howard Zinn
 

Mlle Bijou

Sexy Troublemaker
Sep 25, 2006
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“You’ve got fans booing you for people taking a stand for what they believe in.” Yeah but here's the thing Reggie -the fans also have the right to take a stand for what they believe in. Fans have rights also.


The fans are already taking a stand by, well, standing for the anthem. The booing is not taking a stand, it's disrespecting the right of others to take a stand themselves when it doesn't match their own.

Maintaining the status quo is absolutely an act that has the effect of taking a stand.
 
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