By Bill Kerig
Although I’ve followed every up, down and sideways move of this historic presidential campaign, I’m sad to say now, at the end of all the ugliness, it’s all Red Sox vs Yankees.
Let me explain. I grew up in Boston and went to opening day at Fenway every spring, for all of my formative years. And if there were two things that the drunks in the bleachers and the swells in the seats behind the plate had in common they were: love of the Sox and hatred of the Yankees. And why not, we all consumed a steady diet of The Boston Globe and the Boston Herald, WSBK and WBZ. Any baseball player in pinstripes was surely the spawn of Satan.
Over the years I’ve moved a dozen times, lived all over the country, and in truth don’t even follow baseball any more. I now get my news from many, many sources, and have subscriptions to The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal. I haven’t read The Globe in eons. Yet I still have Red Sox hats in the closet, and I still instinctively hate the Yankees.
So you might think that you could talk me out of my Sox loyalty. You could tell me that the Sox cheat in the game, and on their taxes, and on their wives, and I might voice criticism, and maybe I’d even leave the hat in the closet for a few years, but I’d never, ever, start wearing a Yankees hat.
And you know what? It’s absolutely all right. It’s good, and it’s cool, and it’s fun because it’s a game! Joe Giradi might stack the line up, but he’s not going to staff the Supreme Court or push the nuclear button or change the tax code. David Ortiz might crank a grand slam over the green monster, but he’s not going to build a wall between nations or blow up NATO. The same is not true for the future president of the United States.
Blind loyalty is fun in sports; at the end of the day, watching sports is just a way to pass time. It’s fun, it’s harmless, and it gives Dads and their sons a way to talk to each other. But mirroring the same unthinking fealty to a political party, regardless of how terrible its candidates are is NOT a game. Who becomes the president of the United States of America really, really matters. Yet it’s treated just like Red Sox vs Yankees. And that is a loser for everyone.
Bill Kerig is the Founder of RallyMe.