In Pink Floyd’s film adaptation of ‘The Wall,’ the very drugged-up title character uttered the words, ‘the show must go on.’ Well, in light of this past week’s tragic events, this is not the case in all circumstances.
Major League Baseball, the National Football League and the majority of major college football teams decided to cancel play last week after the vicious terrorist attacks on New York City and Washington, D.C.
Many fans across the nation were upset, feeling that players should have resumed play immediately.
However, I support the decision of the respective players’ unions in that their choice was not the easiest, but it was the right thing to do at the time.
If the leagues decided to continue play, it would act as a distraction, taking many people’s minds off these horrific acts. This is not the right course of action.
Though it would probably be easier to go home and watch your favorite team play instead of continual news coverage of this recent disaster, what would that say about our nation as a whole.
This is not a time to forget these terrible things, but to mourn for those countrymen we have lost.
If we avert our eyes and try to put away our feelings, it would not alleviate the situation but simply just prove to others around the world that we are not affected by losing so many human lives.
I could honestly say, though I love sports as much as any person on this campus, that a football game or pennant race would not be the least bit exciting or fun to watch in such tragic times.
How could I sit there and jovially cheer after I just read of the most recent body counts in the newspaper, growing each day.
Though it may be in disguise, these players are helping us concentrate on what really matters right now. They realize that a baseball game in so trivial in comparison to our entire nation’s sense of security being shattered in a matter of hours.
Still other fans would say, “that’s exactly what the terrorists would like to see, our day-to-day lives being interrupted.”
Granted, this statement has validity but is not nearly as powerful a message as we are sending back.
Players, like all Americans, are uniting in support for our fellow citizens. They are sending the message that they, nor any member of this country, will not soon forget what grave injustices have been committed against us.
They are joining in the grief that is felt around the nation right now, and are doing their part to make sure that attention is in the right place right now, in the thoughts and prayers for all those that lost friends and family on that grim Tuesday morning.
For baseball, our nation’s most coveted and revered sport, this is not the first time players have chosen country over team.
When America entered World War II, MLB suspended play while the majority of its athletes went overseas to fight for our way of life.
Legends like Joe DiMaggio and Ted Williams should not be remembered solely by their play on the field, but also their willingness to risk all they had going for them to win that war and preserve the way of life all Americans have grown to love.
To play hard for your team is admirable, to fight for your country in the peril of danger is patriotic, honorable and heroic.
So, if you find that another slate of games have been postponed and not rescheduled, think twice before you begin cursing the players and calling them cowards for not playing. Remember the reason that they decide not to take the field, and think about all those who we, as a country lost last week.
Do not be angry that they will not play, be proud that they care enough about all the victims in New York and Washington to not play.
They, as we all should, realize that it is just a game and, while entertaining, pales in comparison to the threat, danger and grief that our country so undeservingly received last week.
Keep steady on your unpopular path players, for you gallant men have done more for this country than you can imagine, by simply not doing anything at all. I salute you.