Sports are a phenomenon…an aspect of life that unites people of all backgrounds, classes, races, religions and cultures. Sports unite people through challenge and triumph and can bring a city to its feet. Sports are the backbone of American life. Who doesn’t watch the Super Bowl, who doesn’t have one athlete that they love and want to watch succeed? Who doesn’t have that one team that they’ll cheer for late into the night and spend a ton of money on all the paraphernalia? Sports can instill happiness and heartbreak, or put you through the most stressful seven games of the World Series and fans still keep coming back for more.
At a time when the United States Presidential election has caused uproar throughout the country, sports should be the element of life that people lean on and rely upon for a distraction and relief from the bitter tension this election brings. However, sports have become intertwined with the current climate in America because athletes understand the platform they obtain when they become a professional athlete. Athletes like Colin Kaepernick know that if he protests the National Anthem it will cause a national stir due to his status.
On the other hand, when an athlete commits an act such as domestic violence that always shows the sports world in a negative light. If you understand your platform as an athlete then you also must understand that your actions are put under a microscope, and it becomes an issue that stretches far beyond the sports world.
As this election unfolds the lash back from the sports world may continue to increase. No matter who wins a game, people will be unhappy because of the blanket of tension that lies over our country. It would be no surprise if athletes continue to protest, expose their opinions and take a stand for their beliefs. Kaepernick’s protest is just the beginning of the protests that are to come in the midst of this stressful, tense, basically ridiculous election. It will be very interesting to see how this unfolds…