What do Dane Cook, Bill Simmons, and yours truely have in common? Well, aside from the fact that we're all from the Boston area, we all happen to be mentioned in Kelly Dwyer's take on my question about Boston fans being obnoxious.
I enjoyed his take and liked this part especially:
Pro sports are a series of random events, bad GMs tend to meet up with bad owners and lousy coaches who take on disappointing players - and, before you know it -- you've gone a few decades without a title. It happens. Every city goes through it, at varying and random lengths. It doesn't mean you pity the fans.
Unless, of course, they turn out. And Boston fans turned out. They stuck with their teams, offered sober analysis when ready, and lost their you-know-what when little bouts of oh-my-god turned up. So you'll have to excuse me when I give them the benefit of the doubt. Yeah, they can be act like Sidney Wicks' last name; but we're also dealing with a pretty big fan base, so these things tend to happen. Stupid goatees also tend to result.
In other news, Henry Abbott looks back at the JA Adande piece and at today's John Gonzalez Boston Magazine article on Boston's rep amongst athletes for being a racist city. He centers on the fact that few if any people want to comment on the subject. He quotes John:
The city's reputation for racism endures because we don't want to talk about it, because the press seems more interested in reporting on the controversy than in initiating a useful dialogue, because athletes are more careful today than they've ever been.
I find this to be the central problem with this issue. What is an individual's motivation to talk about race in an intelligent way?
Speaking as a white, middle class male, I don't feel qualified to speak authortively on the subject, despite growing up with many black friends that I played basketball with all my life. More importantly, I run the risk of upsetting any number of people by saying virtually anything on the subject. I actually started to write a post in reaction to the Adande article a week or so ago. But about two paragraphs in, I stopped, read what I wrote and decided "I don't see anything controversial at all about what I've just written, but I'm sure someone somewhere will." So I stopped writing and deleted the post. That's just sad.
The greater good of discussing race is absolutely important in the grander scheme of things. I suppose the problem is that the pain of doing so and having to answer to accusations of having the wrong point of view discourage such talk.