Sports in action

Joseph Miller, Staff Reporter

The world can seem wild and crazy right now and it can be easy to contemplate sports role and impact on society. It can be simple to dismiss sports or question their importance in light of more serious events occurring outside of sports. I feel that sports and sporting events can be extremely useful and beneficial during times like these.

First, sports can offer people a way to cope or escape from the ordeals that can complicate life. Most people have played a sport at sometime and can place themselves into a role in the game.Focusing on a game or an event can offer a short time to think about a game and the game only and not the other numerous factors that can affect our lives.

In addition to pure escapism, sports can offer an avenue of emotional release and bonding.  For example the first home New York Yankees baseball game after the events of 9/11 was important and impactful for a state and an entire nation way beyond the scope of baseball. Victory and championships have show to provide catharsis and bring people together. This can been seen in recent championships won by teams like the Cleveland Cavaliers in basketball, the Chicago Cubs in baseball, and most recently the Philadelphia Eagles in football.

The championships these cities won drew their citizens closer and erupted with joy and pride.  The same sensations have happened here on our campus with our football championship. The Olympic Games have long been about athletic competition and international relationships. The global spotlight that these games garner can and have been used to make statements and foster good will and change.

The 1968 Summer Olympics had Tommie Smith  and A&M-Commerce Alumnus John Carlos raising black gloved fists on the medal podium in a human rights salute. We recently saw the power and strength that can be wielded when scores of gymnasts took down an evil perpetrator of sexual abuse and predation.

The 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongcheng County, South Korea has also shown the power of sports.The long divided nation of Korea walked in the opening ceremony of the games under their Korean Unification Flag and fielded a Women’s Ice Hockey team comprised of members from both North and South Korea. These Olympic Games have also led to North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un to invite South Korean President Moon Jae-In to have meetings. It is refreshing to see that sports can potentially change the world and the people. We can escape, make statements, bond, fight evil and potentially heal nations through athletic competition.