A blog . . . in spite of how pathetic blogging actually is.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

The Emerging Moral Dilemma of Football

Before I proceed let me just point out that football is and has been a part of my identity. My father played in college (He was good). I have fond memories of gathering around the TV on Sundays, watching the Bears . . . and working angles on my parents to perhaps secure a delayed bedtime on Monday nights "If it was a good game." At the very least, we all agreed, I'd get to watch Howard Cosell's halftime recap of the previous day's showdowns.

It really didn't matter who was playing. From an early age, I found the sport intoxicating . . . probably for all the same reasons most people do.

So the last couple weeks have been a bit trying. At Milwaukee's Mitchell Airport, waiting to catch a flight to my cousin's wedding, I saw that one of my favorite authors, Malcolm Gladwell, had a cover story in 'The New Yorker.' I equate flying with impulse purchases of cool magazines I don't (but should) subscribe to, so I walked out of that CNBC Newsstand with my copy (and some Altoids) not knowing what I was about to get myself into.

Believe me when I write these words, I wish I'd of just grabbed an issue of Rolling Stone instead.

You should read Mr. Gladwell's work. Here it is. A word of warning, though. If you do read it (and it'll be pretty evident if you didn't because you'll say something like, "Well, that's a terrible comparison because dogs don't get to choose to be in dogfighting but humans get to choose to be football players" or some such thing) you're going to have to make some decisions. The one I'm wrestling with at present is whether or not I should just give in to the near overwhelming temptation to simply live in denial. Lord knows I do it with any number of other things in my life. Football's not going anywhere, right? It's way too ingrained in our culture.

And it's big business.

Here's one of the best examples I've seen in recent memory of mainstream media's conservative bias. Read here about Congress getting tough with the NFL.

So, by now, you've read Gladwell and you've read about the Congressional hearings the other day. When you read about Roger Goodell et al on the Hill, did you catch it? What got left out? What didn't get addressed?

Brett Favre arrives in Lambeau this Sunday while the little ones in the Fox Valley Pop Warner League are enjoying their first weekend off since just after Labor Day.

Here's a question.

What do these guys . . .

. . . and these guys . . .

. . . potentially have in common?

Anybody seen my copy of Rolling Stone?