Last night my twitter timeline was assaulted with so many #hawtaeks on sticking to sports and how we are all losing something valuable when we choose not to do it. Sticking to sports is a tired worn out notion commonly used to try to silence people who say things we don’t want to hear. In fact, no one has truly ever stuck to sports.
The notion that anyone watching sports is focused only on one thing is patently ridiculous. Watching a sports event always carries with it something other than sports. If you attend a live sporting event you see support of the military or support of a local children’s function. Sponsored banners might hang everywhere encouraging you to support a particular #brand. Halftime or intermission activities incorporate many different things and often honor things outside of sports.
Better yet, listen to the conversations that occur while watching a sporting event, whether it is live or at a sports bar. The conversation often revolves around the game but it never stays there. People talk about the commercials and during an election season there will be political ads present. They talk about their children and spouses. They talk about their jobs. Humans are multidimensional and quite capable of talking about a multitude of things while simultaneously watching a sporting event. To suggest otherwise is an insult and frankly not supported by the facts.
No, what people object to is being presented with an opinion they do not wish to see or hear. The stick to sports crowd does not and never has “stuck to sports.” They talk about movies, music and oh how hot that person is sitting across the bar or singing on the television. They talk about things of interest to them. Jobs, children, and yes even sports can be affected by what your politicians do.
America has a problem with political apathy that we must overcome. The same applies to religion too and the two are far more intertwined than we would like to admit. The conversations around these topics are difficult and often fraught with disagreement. Guess what so is sports fandom and you don’t see people shying away from those conversations.