Nothing is wrong with any of this, but it puts DeMaurice Smith’s very public crusade against Rush Limbaugh’s ownership bid in a somewhat different light. And it raises new kinds of issues for athletes. Should they refuse to play for an owner whose political views are not in sync with their own? On what issues? Abortion? Global warming? (And will their agents dare tell the players that, before the next collective bargaining agreement is signed between the NFL players and the owners, Obama and the Democratic Congress is likely to raise their taxes?)
Or should we go whole hog and rename the New York Jets the New York Yellow Dog Democrats? Should the (red state) Atlanta Falcons become the Atlanta Elephants (and the blue state Seattle Seahawks the Seattle Donkeys? What about those pesky monikers that are not politically correct, such as the Redskins and the Chiefs. Perhaps those need to be be changed. (I kind of like Kansas City Trumans. They could play the Washington Eisenhowers in honor of the last Republican president whom D.C. Democrats can abide – and the first president of either party to sign a civil rights bill.) This all may seem silly, but it isn’t. Team sports are supposed to unite the people of a given locale, not divide them. One of the things that traditionally unites sports fans, by the way, is the perfidy of the owners.