I’m not a very political person and I don’t normally get involved when it comes to politics, but the news last night that our US Troops had shot and killed Osama Bin Laden made me think of a few things. I guess celebration isn’t the correct word to use as I watched people cheering in Times Square. Bin Laden was the one who orchestrated the September 11, 2001 attacks so I understand the reaction of people considering what a monster he was. I guess it would be more vindication than anything else because it does not relieve the suffering of those who lost loved ones on that horrific day, as well as so many more since the war started in Iraq and Afghanistan. It’s been almost ten years since the 9/11 attacks and the US has been trying to find Bin Laden ever since then. To find him and bring him down was a great victory for the US. But let’s not forget how many women and men are still away from their families and will remain away for a long time.
The sport side of this story is how Emmitt Smith played with a separated shoulder against the Giants in 1993 and was called brave or when it was called heroic when Phillip Rivers played with a torn ACL in the 2007 playoffs. Both are amazing sports stories that go along with so many other great stories, but let’s leave those kinds of words for the women and men who are out there fighting every day and never know what today or tomorrow will bring. Players with injuries such as those know that more times than not they will have surgery, go through rehab and live to play another day. The US Navy Seals who jumped on those helicopters could not say the same thing. They had no idea what was waiting for them or what the results would be. Whether or not they would survive and be able to see their families again. Those people are the brave ones and real heroes who deserve to be cheered and honored along with the rest of the women and men who continue to fight and who have given their lives. Ask the athletes in the sports world and they would be the first to agree with that.
Now with Bin Laden dead and buried it would be a real shame to see empty stadiums on the first Sunday of the 2011 season, which is also the 10th anniversary of 9/11. Every anniversary of 9/11 is emotional, but with this being the 10th anniversary along with the death of Bin Laden will make it that more emotional. These players and owners need to wake up and stop talking about how the fans are important to them as well as the game and start showing the fans that they are important by getting a deal done now! Sports are important to all the soldiers away from home as well. Watching sports brings them back home and it’s almost like an escape for them for the few hours they can watch.
What’s important in life is the women and men who put their lives on the line each and every day, as well as all the families who have lost loves ones in the war against terror and in the attacks on 9/11. Does anyone think these people care about the $9 billion that the players and owners are fighting over? Let’s face it, sports is entertainment and as much as many fans joke around that it’s life, myself included, it’s far from it. What sports fans do like however is to use sports to honor those who have dedicated their lives to protect and cheer them from the stands. Fans come together for a few short hours and show the pride they have in their country. Whether it’s waving the American Flag, shaking the hand of someone from the military or just chanting “USA” from the stands. This is how sports fans show their unity and it would be a real shame to take that away over something like how to share $9 billion.
So to the players and the owners…Lets stop making these negotiations out to be something that resembles conflict of major proportions and start thinking about what the important things in life really are. This is not a war! You are a group of people who supposedly love the game of football and all the great things it brings to your lives. Why all the battles? Why all the lawsuits? Watch the news today or pick up a newspaper and then maybe you’ll realize that the $9 billion is really a blessing to everyone involved and not something that should be fought over like you’re at war.
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