This is perhaps the biggest weekend in the NFL season, with an insane amount of playoff games being televised.
I haven’t watched a single one.
The Eagles, the only professional team for which I will ever root, are a mess both on the field and in the front office – but that’s not really what’s souring me on the league 1.
The NFL is just too powerful. People joke all the the time the NFL is like a religion for many of its fans, but it seems like the league is now such a massive cultural force they feel like they can do anything and people will flock to it anyway.
Watching the NFL, I can imagine why the early Protestants challenged the abuses of the Catholic church in the late-Medieval/early-Renaissance period. Whenever a cultural power becomes so dominant there seems to be nothing which can affect it’s position corruption is sure to follow 2.
I think it’s past time for professional sports to suffer a Reformation.
For me, the final straw was what went on in St. Louis this past week. When an owner of the team to publicly trashes the city which hosts his team as a tactic to make sure his franchise will be allowed to relocate, my stomach churns. When it’s revealed this owner used this tactic even though the public will be paying for the stadium built for his team until 2021 I am disgusted. I’ve heard people say, “But St. Louis is a baseball and hockey town” This statement makes me want to scream. The taxpayers are on the hook for a bill racked up by a private enterprise – an enterprise which abandoned the very people who subsidized it. Any why? So it could go chase more profits elsewhere.
What the NFL did, and the Rams in particular, was perfectly legal. But this is perfect example of how legal is not synonymous with either “ethical” or “moral.”
Added to this mix are both The Oakland Raiders and San Diego Chargers – two teams who are looking to move to LA alongside the Rams because no one wants to build billionaires a stadium with public money. If The Raiders left Oakland for LA again it would about the worst obscene gesture the league could offer toward an entire population. The Chargers’ desire to move is nothing short of a spoiled child throwing a temper tantrum. No one will build a multi-billion dollar enterprise a publicly funded playground? Cry me a river 3.
But all three of these teams will get their way. They’ll abandon their fans and put their heritage to the torch 4 and no one will be able to do anything about it. Why? Because they are that big. People will grumble and complain and moan – but the next Sunday they’ll be right back to watching the games and generating revenue for people who treat them with utter contempt.
It’s their medieval religion, you see.
I just don’t know if I can do it anymore. I love the game of football, I really do. There is an artistry to it’s strategy and execution which I find fascinating. But the NFL itself is the very definition of a white-washed tomb.
- Philly sports fans expect misery. ↩
- It’s one reason why I’m perfectly fine not living in a “Christian nation,” thank you very much. ↩
- I still can’t believe Philadelphia and PA were conned into doing this. Look, the stadiums are nice, but these people are able to afford to make their own facilities with private financing. ↩
- Which the Rams already did once, ironically leaving LA for St. Louis. The Raiders seem to treat the people Oakland like an at-will booty call — one which they can treat like trash in the morning. ↩