Reply to: Re: Sports
booth2 at husc.harvard.edu
Wed Jun 26 12:42:46 MDT 1996
I guess I agree somewhat with the "sports is the opium of the
masses" argument but I would qualify it by saying that there *is* another
side to sports. As an ex-jock, I can testify that there are moments in
playing sports where the coaches, the fans and even the opponent all take
a back seat to the making the play... to the essence or art of the game at
a given moment (whichever game it is). It's like with work. People, at
some level, need to and like to work but that impulse is completely
exploited, perverted and alienated under capitalism. Same with sports.
I can barely stand to watch the olympics coverage or Wimbledon
or the Red Sox (actually I've stopped watching the Red Sox anyway)
because of all the bullshit jingoism and commercialism. But I look
forward to the day when athletics, like every other human endeavor, is
controlled by the people that make it happen: working people.
On 25 Jun 1996, Jon Flanders wrote:
> I've said this before, but anyway.
> I see sports as the male worker's substitute for politics. When I hear
> teams, managers, individual figures capabilities, and general strategic
> questions being discussed by a group of workers, I am convinced again that
> they are capable of serious thought on political questions.
> Since the penalties for involving oneself in the political world can be
> quite high for a worker, sporting questions provide a safe outlet for energy
> that might be directed against the ruling class.
> Of course, the capitalists are only too happy to provide 57 channels of the
> stuff on cable.
> Since most women don't share this interest, they have more time to notice
> the general deterioration around them. Hence the gender gap.
> Occasionally I will go on a break room rant about sports and pornography
> being the moderm opium of the people. One of my co-workers will chuckle and
> say, "Ok comrade, we hear you." They know me pretty well by now.
> My lack of knowledge of English football is quite complete. My knowledge of
> steroid driven US football in its current version is little better.
> I guess I should stick to teaching my seven year old how to catch a
> baseball. Or monitoring the Malecki-Olaechea ping pong match live on the
> Jon Flanders
> E-mail from: Jonathan E. Flanders, 25-Jun-1996
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