A couple of recent news stories really had me thinking about a rather troubling trend that is going on in our present society. Yesterday, a crazy and obviously very evil man entered a Jewish synagogue in Pittsburgh and killed several members who were just innocent worshippers exercising their freedom of religion and worship. The day before, a man was arrested for sending bombs in the mail to several political figures who are huge critics of President Trump. What is the one common denominator of all these acts? It is pure hate and evil. And let us not forget the man who shot several Republican members of Congress during a softball practice. Or those who feel the need to enter a restaurant and harass political members who they strongly disagree with on issues. It seems that they events are becoming more and more common in our society with no end in sight. I dread to think what these acts of violence may eventually lead to. It is indeed a very troubling trend that must be stopped.
Committing acts of violence against people who worship or follow a particular faith such as those 11 poor souls in the Pittsburgh synagogue is just plain evil and totally wrong. People who attend the many worship services in this country are among the finest people we have living in the United States. They mean absolutely no harm whatsoever on anyone. Some are already calling out for forgiveness for this shooter. Isn’t that something that a group of people would call out for forgiveness to a person with such an evil heart? Maybe we can all learn something from that. I fully understand that many folks have a problem with people who practice a particular faith and religion. There are a number of atheists who would like nothing more than to shut down all churches. I don’t see what good that would exactly accomplish.
The growing trend of political violence is nothing new and seems to be really taking off right now. If you are going to blame President Trump for this violence, please do not stop at him. Also consider some of the statements of the previous President along with several Democratic lawmakers and a former Attorney General. I find it very disturbing that some of these leaders would say some of the things that they say. Their words and statements only ignite the fuel that spreads the violence. I would hold any individual in high praise, Republican or Democrat for speaking out and saying we need to respect the values and thoughts of the other side.
The growth of social media has really spread a lot of this hatred as well. I personally have stopped using Twitter because of the lies and hatred on that site. It is nearly impossible to hold an intelligent discussion with anyone on that site. And of course let’s not forget Facebook. How many of you have wanted to punch someone after reading some political post that you disagree with? These sites have really raised the level of hate and division among people.
Nobody will ever totally agree with your views on politics and religion. Let’s remember that we probably have much more in common that many people think. Using violence and harassment as a way to prove your point will never work. That is never and will never be the American way. We get rid of politicians we disagree with by articulating better ideas and by voting them out. Political violence is just something for desperate supporters who cannot fall back on ideas. Sadly, political and religious violence seems to be a growing trend in today’s society. Can we all just be respectful and kind towards others for a change and work together to make America a better country? I do not view people with different ideas or beliefs than mine as evil. And neither should you.
Like many rabid sports fans in this country, I love to listen to either sports talk radio or watch some of the many sports shows on television. The more opinionated the hosts are, the better the show is. The other day, I came across this sports talk show on television hoping to hear some discussion about the current Major League Baseball playoffs. Not that I am a huge baseball fan, but the playoffs always capture my interest and attention. Sadly, I was very disappointed. The show began with a huge discussion about the problems of the much maligned Dallas Cowboys. Like who really gives a rats you know what! Then this show switched over to another interesting topic, the Los Angeles Lakers and some silly discussion about LeBron and something he was quoted as saying. My interest in the show quickly waned and eventually had enough and turned off the television. Is this what sports talk shows have become these days? I highly doubt they even mentioned or discussed the playoffs at all. Apparently talking about Dak Prescott for 2 hours is more important than discussing the baseball playoffs. That is the new normal now in sports. Remember when Major League Baseball used to rule the sports scene? I do. The World Series and the rush to reach the Series used to be a huge thing for all sports fans. Those days are long gone my friend. The decline for Major League Baseball is real with no end in sight. It is no longer the great American past time or number one professional sport. One might argue that it has slipped to number 3. The NFL and the NBA seem to have the grip on being the most popular sports leagues now in this country. I would not be surprised if Major League Soccer bumps baseball further down the list in a few years.
Why is this happening you might ask? There are many reasons that I see. The sport is simply a reflection of the changing culture of this country. We are a nation who now wants quick action for our entertainment. As a one time huge baseball fan, I can honestly say that at times, watching a major league baseball game is about as exciting as watching paint dry on a wall. It would be a far more exciting game if the ball was in play far more often, but in today’s game, that is slowly eroding. Strikeouts are up among the hitters and many games seem like nothing more than a 3-4 hour exciting of watching a pitcher and catcher tease some poor hitter into thinking he can actually make some good contact with the ball. In an actual game, how often do you see a really exciting play? Those factors are a huge reason why many people are slowly being turned off by the game. It is just not that entertaining or worth sitting around for 3 hours.
The NBA has risen in the ranks for a very simple reason. They have very heavy star appeal and do a great job of marketing its players. People tune in to watch or attend games to watch superstar players. How many Major League Baseball players have the star appeal of a LeBron James or Steph Curry? I cannot name one. If MLB wants to expand its popularity, it really needs to market its players better. I see that as a huge issue with the league.
I read somewhere that little league participation has dropped considerably in the last 5 years. If that is true, the MLB is in serious trouble. Like I alluded to earlier, baseball or cool enough for today’s youth or even young millennials. Capturing the interests of those younger demographics will be crucial for the long-term success of this league. How will that be done is a serious challenge. How can the league make the game more action packed will be something that the executives of MLB will have to discuss.
If you are a diehard baseball fan like many still are, don’t despair. I don’t see the league folding anytime soon. But you really have to be concerned about the seemingly fading popularity and attention that the sport seems to be getting in recent years. If I had stock in MLB, I would sell it really soon. When major sports talks shows bypass your league on its openings, you know it is time to sound the alarm button. Major League Baseball has some serious interests issues that need to addressed and addressed quickly. The sport seems to be in a serious tailspin.