By Rich Herrera
Mr. Know-It-All is going to struggle this week. He is going to struggle going on doing things he normally does, things like watching games and worrying about the Rays hitting woes. He will feel bad when he wonders what it is going to take to get the Revis Island deal done and bring him to Tampa Bay. He will wonder about his priorities when his mind wonders to the thoughts of something as insignificant as batting averages and wins and losses, and draft picks. Seriously how can he really be overly concerned about who is in goal for the Lightning and how the offense looks in the USF spring game when there is carnage in the streets of Boston?
You see Mr. Know-It-All is America’s Role Model in many ways. He feels the same way you do. The guilt of thank goodness it wasn’t me. The anger of how can someone do something like this to all there innocent people. The outrage of the cowards who killed an 8 year old boy in cold blood whose only crime was being with his family and coming back to finish line after getting an ice cream cone. The sadness that come with the senseless loss of life and the feelings of vulnerability of when you lay your head down at night knowing there is true evil in the world that are planning something horrible and your not knowing where they are and what they have in mind.
While Mr. Know-It-All struggles with the same feelings you do, he is going to do what all American’s do in times of crisis. He is going to stand tall and tell the evil doers you cant not win, you will not change our way of life, you can throw everything you want at us all you want but the sprit of the American people is something your hate and evil will never understand and will never overpower, not now not ever. Evil has reared its hateful head once again in Boston at the finish line of the Marathon. But once again evil has underestimated the American people and who we are what we stand for. You see even though at 11 am we were Rays fans and Red Sox fans rooting for greatness for the boys from Tampa Bay and pox upon those who dare wear a navy blue cap with the hated B for Boston. Yes everyday we fuss and fight on the playing field and carve our nation into 30 different city-states with bloodlust for one another on the field of play.
But what evil doesn’t understand at 2:50 Eastern Time our city states you see everyday on TV cease to exist. You see we can be east coasters, southerners, Red Sox Nation or the Rays Republic, but when our nation is challenged we all unite as one, and one nation under God, indivisible with liberty and justice for all. We all stand united and our hearts go out to Boston even more than we have ever rooted against them.
So what to do now, here is where Mr. Know-It-All knows that he has something he has to do and that is go on. Not going on like nothing happened in Boston this week. But go on with the American way of life and keep doing what Americans will do. We will carry on but with heavy hearts for those who lost their life on Patriots Day and all those who were injured in the mayhem. We will go on with a purpose that honors those heroes who choose to run to the blasts as police and firefighters and EMTS and national guardsmen instead of away from them. We will go for those who volunteer to walk into harms way to keep us safe at night while wearing the uniform of a hero that of the US Military. For us to do anything less will let the BASTARDS win and NONE of us will EVER LET THAT HAPPEN.
Yesterday when I was finishing the show I broke down on the air, as my mind flashed backed to Sept 11 and the challenge our nation faced to pick up the shattered pieces of our national psyche after we were attacked on our own soil. I struggled like everyone in America during the days after that awful day. I wondered how to go to back to work and talk about sports when the world stopped turning. I found inspiration in the letter that the Commissioner of Baseball received to the President of the United States at the outbreak of World War II.
Like then, we are challenged and today we will respond with the same spirit our grandparents showed in the face of evil. Sports will provide a rest and chance to catch our breath during uncertain times. It will provide much needed relief when the stress begins to get to us all. I saw the effect the Yankees and Mets had on the workers at ground zero, how it brought them back to humanity for a few precious moments while they were in a living hell sifting the ruble of the Twin Towers. Their feet up and bellies full and the ballgame on TV gave them a moment they richly deserved a moment of relief and peace.
We have already seen how sports can show support and help heel the wounds of the senseless acts of cowards. Last night Ben Revere made a catch that might be the web gem of the year. When he spoke with reporters after the game he showed them his glove that had the words “pray for Boston”. His little gesture let everyone in Boston and around the world knows we are all Bostonians at this moment. And if we can all do just our small part it adds up to something huge for all of us.
My dear Judge:
Thank you for yours of January fourteenth. As you will, of course, realize the final decision about the baseball season must rest with you and the Baseball club owners – so what I am going to say is solely a personal and not an official point of view.
I honestly feel that it would be best for the country to keep baseball going. There will be fewer people unemployed and everybody will work longer hours and harder than ever before.
And that means that they ought to have a chance for recreation and for taking their minds off their work even more than before.
Baseball provides a recreation which does not last over two hours or two hours and a half, and which can be got for very little cost. And, incidentally, I hope that night games can be extended because it gives an opportunity to the day shift to see a game occasionally.
As to the players themselves, I know you agree with me that the individual players who are active military or naval age should go, without question, into the services. Even if the actual quality to the teams is lowered by the greater use of older players, this will not dampen the popularity of the sport. Of course, if an individual has some particular aptitude in a trade or profession, he ought to serve the Government. That, however, is a matter which I know you can handle with complete justice.
Here is another way of looking at it – if 300 teams use 5,000 or 6,000 players, these players are a definite recreational asset to at least 20,000,000 of the fellow citizens – and that in my judgment is thoroughly worthwhile.
With every best wish,
Very sincerely yours,
Franklin D. Roosevelt
Hon. Kenesaw M. Landis 333 North Michigan Avenue Chicago, Illinois