Sunday, May 16, 2010

Fake humanitarian team owners

"If leagues, team owners and teams are so demonstratively inclined to exploit
  • shouldn't they also try to restore some sport to their sports?
Where are the humanitarians among team owners who would as aggressively stand up against, oh, must-buy preseason games? Or $5 bottles of water? Or made-for-TV-money NBA Finals that begin and end so late that the only kids with a shot at them are those who work the night shift? That brings us to Suns' principal and principled owner, Robert Sarver, who, with the NBA's approval, recently had his team wear "Los Suns" uniforms to register disapproval of Arizona's new immigration laws.

What if the owners of the Suns discovered that hordes of people were sneaking into Suns' games without paying? What if the owners had a good idea as to who the gate-crashers are, but the ushers and security personnel were

Furthermore, what if Suns' ownership was expected to provide those who sneaked in with complimentary eats and drink? And what if, on those days when a gate-crasher became ill or injured,

"Furthermore," adds Brooklyn's Tommy Mitchell, "what if one of those 'fans' gave birth? Not only couldn't you eject them, you'd have to provide another free seat."

Twenty years ago, the NFL decided to muscle in on Arizona politics, leveraging the Super Bowl as the carrot-on-a-stick -- if voters didn't resolve to make Martin Luther King Day an official, paid day off, state holiday, then no Supe for you!

  • Leading the NFL's noble charge was Eagles' owner Norman Braman, who declared that Arizonans who did not support such a proposition were, at best, disrespectful to the legacy of Dr. King, and, at worst, racist.
  • Regardless, Arizona would suffer the financial punishment of losing the Super Bowl.

Braman owned auto dealerships throughout Florida. On MLK Day, that year, Jody McDonald, then with WFAN, had an idea:

He called Braman dealerships to see if they were open, to gauge Braman's genuine, money-where-your-mouth-is regard for King's legacy, to discover whether his employees were given the day off in tribute to King.

  • Braman's employees were on site and ready to sell cars. With folks off from work, there was no better day or way to cash in than by exploiting Martin Luther King Day."...


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