"Why I Hate Sports" by Tom Judson

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"Why I Hate Sports" by Tom Judson

Post by Earl on Tue Aug 05, 2014 3:00 am

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/tom-judson/why-i-hate-sports_b_3015465.html

Tom Judson
Actor, musician and author


Why I Hate Sports
Posted: 04/05/2013 10:57 am        




I'm fascinated by the reaction to the video of the Rutgers basketball coach abusing his players.      

My first experience with organized team sports was kickball in first grade gym period. The gym teacher would select as captains two of the more athletically inclined youngsters while the rest of us sat on the red line and one by one were chosen as players for their teams. My agony in being passed over increased in direct proportion to the number of boys on the line diminishing. Eventually two choices remained: me and the mentally disabled kid in our class. I recall no extra attention or encouragement from the gym teacher to ameliorate this situation.      

By the time I got to high school there was no attempt made to hide the fact that in my little town 65 miles north of New York City sports were king. In the local paper was page after page filled with photos of sports teams posed in a group, and star players holding trophies, and action shots of remarkable maneuvers during games, but one would search in vain for any mention of academic or artistic achievements.      

This view that sports were a higher priority was reflected by my community at large when one year the provision of the school budget increasing athletic funding was passed while funds covering new books for the library were nixed.      

In the classroom I held my own and in the music department I excelled, but these things didn't really matter at our school; esteem was earned by athletic prowess and nothing else.      

Our school building had two wings: the administration/gymnasium/auditorium was in one and the classrooms were situated in another. Connecting these two wings was a short, narrow corridor. Each morning one had to pass through this hallway to get to homeroom. This is where all the athletes congregated before the first bell. I called it "Jock Row" and the memory of it haunts me to this day. I'd take a deep breath, lower my gaze, hold my books close to my chest and plunge in.      

"Faggot." "Faggot." "Faggot." "Faggot." Every morning for four years -- every single morning -- I'd hear this epithet mumbled for as long as it took me to run the gauntlet. They might as well have thrown bottles; at least those bruises would have been visible. It is inconceivable to me that no one knew this was a daily occurrence. Yet no one -- none of my friends, nor my teachers, nor school administrators ever once came to my aid, much less tried to curtail the behavior.      

Indeed, the same individuals who taunted me before homeroom would be lauded for their sports records in the morning P.A. announcements. Worse still, some of the boys who verbally abused me in Jock Row would walk around the corner and flirt with my sister. Even as a teenager I could see how utterly reprehensible that was. And yet these were the ones displayed as role models to the student body at large.      

Even in adulthood, sports are seen as somehow preferable to other interests. Every hotel has umpteen ESPN channels, but try to find a classic movie! Every holiday afternoon with the family is underscored by the unending din of 50,000 screaming voices in the stands of whatever game is being broadcast.      

Those boys who abused me in the hallway grew up to be sports fans. They sit in their living rooms in their team jerseys and scream at the television set. They attend games and riot and stampede and stomp each other to death. Is anyone even surprised any more when this happens? Apart from a performance of Macbeth in 1849 and the 1913 premiere of the ballet The Rite of Spring and of course that little mishap at Our American Cousin, I am unaware of any violence related to a theatrical event.      

The few professional ball games I've been dragged to have made me very nervous. Even now I refuse to throw a ball overhand out of fear of being laughed at. A dread of Opening Day is the one thing that has kept me from becoming president of the United States.      

Absolutely nothing in the Rutgers video surprised me. Nothing. I've seen it all my life. That coach is just a jerk from some other school's Jock Row all grown up and acting like a big, bad man. It did make me briefly wonder what became of all those guys from my own corridor of hell, but a second later I realized I don't give a shit."

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"You beat a woman and drag her down a flight of stairs, pulling her hair out by the roots? You're the fourth guy taken in the NFL draft. You kill people while driving drunk? That guy's welcome. Players caught in hotel rooms with illegal drugs and prostitutes? We know they're welcome. Players accused of rape and pay the woman to go away? You lie to police, trying to cover up a murder? We're comfortable with that.  You love another man? Well, now you've gone too far!" -- Dale Hansen, Dallas sports anchor for ABC local affiliate WFAA
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Re: "Why I Hate Sports" by Tom Judson

Post by Big Fat Heretic on Tue Aug 05, 2014 3:51 am

Good evening Earl:

More and more people, academics, are speaking out against the sports culture.

But, most people don't listen and they don't care.

I hope, that next summer, all around the world, temperatures rise to about 135 degrees Fahrenheit, and then, a big meteorite hits the earth, in a remote area so nobody gets killed, but it raises so much dust into the atmosphere that we have a long three year winter.

Then, maybe, just maybe, people will start listening to the academics, and turn away from sports!

Maybe, that's what it's going to take.
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Re: "Why I Hate Sports" by Tom Judson

Post by Earl on Tue Aug 05, 2014 5:05 am

But if the country ever gets into trouble or faces a looming crisis, we can always import nerds from Asian countries [sarcasm].   Rolling Eyes   

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"You beat a woman and drag her down a flight of stairs, pulling her hair out by the roots? You're the fourth guy taken in the NFL draft. You kill people while driving drunk? That guy's welcome. Players caught in hotel rooms with illegal drugs and prostitutes? We know they're welcome. Players accused of rape and pay the woman to go away? You lie to police, trying to cover up a murder? We're comfortable with that.  You love another man? Well, now you've gone too far!" -- Dale Hansen, Dallas sports anchor for ABC local affiliate WFAA
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Re: "Why I Hate Sports" by Tom Judson

Post by Big Fat Heretic on Tue Aug 05, 2014 7:17 am

Earl wrote:But if the country ever gets into trouble or faces a looming crisis, we can always import nerds from Asian countries [sarcasm].   Rolling Eyes   

Actually, that's not really a "sarcasm" because, that is what the USA will try to do.

But that won't work either!

If there is enough dust raised up into the atmosphere to cause a three year winter, all the jet plane flights would be grounded. That happened in the European states during a recent volcanic eruption for about a week.

No, if we do import any science nerds and techno-geeks from overseas, they would have to come in by boat.

But, I seriously doubt that they would want to come here, because they will be needed in their own countries.

We do have our own scientists here in the USA, and all the Republican retards will just have to shut the fuck up and listen to the advice from our scientists.

And, our scientists might even threaten to go on strike, unless the Republicans work with the Democrats to pass legislation to improve science education in our schools.

Also, the jocks and sports fans in our public high schools and colleges will have to just shut the fuck up, and began to show some respect for our own science nerds and techno-geeks.

So, this could still work out in the long run.

There won't be any sporting events, except maybe some basketball during the three year winter.

But, stadiums with domes, well, those domes would collapse under the weight of the snow accumulation, and we're going to be too busy doing more important stuff for our own survival to be removing the snow from stadium domes.

So, yeah! There would be no sporting events during the three year winter, except maybe, outdoor hockey.

But, most of us will be too preoccupied with survival to even bother to watch and any sports.
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Re: "Why I Hate Sports" by Tom Judson

Post by Earl on Wed Aug 27, 2014 7:50 am

I also posted Tom Judson's essay in a topic at Democratic Underground entitled "Why do so many liberals dislike sports?"  (By the way, I did not write the OP for the DU topic.)  In my post I typed up comments of my own below Judson's essay.  I was reading them again last night and decided that I should post them here as well.  I've taken the liberty of making a few revisions.




http://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1204&pid=33449

For the record, I am not gay; and I'm not sedentary, either. I've been pumping iron at a local health club for years. I've spent a small fortune on personal trainers. In other words, I'm not easy to stereotype.  

I don't consider myself to be a sports hater. I reject the term as being applicable to me. I'm simply a critic of the negative aspects of the culture of school sports. The article I've copied and pasted above is an excellent presentation of a point of view so many of you sports fans are unwilling to consider, but will automatically dismiss and ridicule without a shred of empathy or compassion.  

No real effort was made in this topic to try to understand why some people, especially some guys, have misgivings about the predominance of sports in our society. Instead, such people have been attacked by sports fans as being bad, evil people. I thought liberalism was supposed to be about trying to understand the other guy's point of view and trying to promote understanding. I guess I'm mistaken.  

There has not been a single word in this topic about sports-related bullying. Not a word. Ordinarily, I would expect liberals to be sympathetic to victims of bullying in the schools. But, again, I'm mistaken. At least not when the bullies happen to be "jocks." Even when the bullying was particularly demeaning and it went on for years, many sports fans don't care and tell the victims that they should get over it. Indeed, I don't know of a single instance when a DU member who posted that he had been bullied by "jocks" in high school received any sympathy from a DU sports fan, such as "I'm sorry that happened to you." There may have been such an exchange in this forum somewhere, but I've never seen it.  

So, the so-called "sports haters" are put down. Can anyone honestly say that bad attitudes are never found among sports fans? The rape victim in the Steubenville case (not to mention other rape victims whose rapists were "jocks") continues to be persecuted to this very day, despite the "guilty" verdict! Those who are doing the persecuting, which is some of the cruelest behavior I've ever seen, are sports fans.  

On the one hand, you have sports fans who get offended (quite easily, it seems) whenever someone posts "I hate sports" -- a comment that has no power or effect upon anyone, especially in a society whose popular culture is saturated with and dominated by school sports. On the other, a victim of rape is persecuted for "ruining the future careers" of two high-school "jocks" in Steubenville, Ohio. (Mind you, the victim -- like all other rape victims -- will have to live with the crime that was committed against her for the rest of her life.) Which is worse? You be the judge.

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"You beat a woman and drag her down a flight of stairs, pulling her hair out by the roots? You're the fourth guy taken in the NFL draft. You kill people while driving drunk? That guy's welcome. Players caught in hotel rooms with illegal drugs and prostitutes? We know they're welcome. Players accused of rape and pay the woman to go away? You lie to police, trying to cover up a murder? We're comfortable with that.  You love another man? Well, now you've gone too far!" -- Dale Hansen, Dallas sports anchor for ABC local affiliate WFAA
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Re: "Why I Hate Sports" by Tom Judson

Post by Big Fat Heretic on Wed Aug 27, 2014 8:13 am

Good morning Earl:

Yeah! I remember in an earlier comment I has said the following . . . . .


Big Fat Heretic wrote:Good evening Earl:

More and more people, academics, are speaking out against the sports culture.

But, most people don't listen and they don't care.

I hope, that next summer, all around the world, temperatures rise to about 135 degrees Fahrenheit, and then, a big meteorite hits the earth, in a remote area so nobody gets killed, but it raises so much dust into the atmosphere that we have a long three year winter.  

Then, maybe, just maybe, people will start listening to the academics, and turn away from sports!

Maybe, that's what it's going to take.

Well, I would like to amend that . . . . .

I hope that meteorite does come down in the middle of a sports arena leaving a crater about 200 feet across, and the intense heat fries all those moronic cattle and sheep sitting in the bleachers!!!

Yeah! I have a craving for some roast beef and mutton!!!
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