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PERSPECTIVES

This is where we offer some of our thoughts and perspectives to you. We won't promise they're better than anyone else's. Or even right. But we'll at least provide interesting ways of looking at things.

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Patriotics

Date: 2017-Feb-05           Author: Barry Shatzman

Have we had some amazing season-ending sports games this past year or what? The Cleveland Cavaliers, the Chicago Cubs, Roger Federer. And today it was the New England Patriots.

I didn't really care who won... as long as it wasn't that Washington football team whose name shall not be written anywhere on Lobby99 (and yeah... a few others in other sports).

A long time ago i actually did a unit on sports fans in a social psychology class... and studied some of the criteria people use to pick favorite teams or players.

I have my own criteria for liking or disliking a player. Are they abusive to partners or others? Do they play dirty? Have they murdered anyone? Or do they do community service? Do they play alertly and smartly? Do they hustle? Are they consistent? Sometimes it's tough. Tom Brady obviously had an deflated sense of truth a few years ago. But he plays incredibly smart and works as hard as anyone.

Here's something really interesting about my criteria... my likes or dislikes for players don't seem to have too much effect on their performance.

I figure by now you must be asking "why is Barry ranting about sports on a news website?"

That's fine... and i hope you ask the same thing of other news organizations when they treat news and issues like sporting events rather than as ongoing issues.

We don't always differentiate between the two in our thinking either. I'm sure many newspapers tomorrow will have the Super Bowl outcome as their big headline (a funny concept considering that anyone who really cares most likely already knows). But it's an important distinction. The outcome of a sporting event likely won't make your day any different when you wake up tomorrow. But the outcome of issues such as health care and work conditions might determine if you wake up.

So hope you enjoyed every one of those 62 points scored today. But now it's time to help make a few points of our own.

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