Tony Reali is the host of one of my favorite programs to watch on TV. He host the weekday show, Around the Horn, that discusses all things sports with its regularly occurring panel. Recently Reali suffered a big loss when he his wife went into labor with twins and only one of them survived this life. It is something that is truly tragic and my heart, thoughts, and prayers go out to him and his family. He took some time off from his show because of what happened, but returned back yesterday and with his return delivered a powerful message about life and love. His message even turned political for a time. “Today my thoughts are with children in cages. That’s parents experiencing loss, too,” Reali said. “Humanity needs to be better.” This got me thinking. Why does there have to be a political vibe and message from a show that discusses sports?
Now of course his losing a child has affected how he sees the world and he sees immigrants, though illegal ones, being torn from their children and is equating that to losing children as well. I concluded that I am fine with his political rhetoric. I am fine with it because I am a believer in free markets and if the market as a whole does not enjoy listening to politics in sports then they can decide to not listen and that company will be hurt because of that loss. The free market, which is a principle so highly touted by those on the right, should have its place here and should work out the details of this situation.
I can’t help but think that there will be those, if not many, that will hear his words and that will wish that he not interject politics into sports. I know this because I have seen this happen in the media. One of the most prime examples was in the recent months when Laura Ingraham spoke out against Lebron James and told him to be quiet and to just dribble a basketball. There is this notion that just because somebody is an athlete or a celebrity they cannot have an opinion on matters. Now there opinion is a very looked to action and therefore it can turn dangerous when you factor in the many non thinking minds of the public. That aside though, if a person searches out through study and experience and comes to a conclusion about how they feel about a topic then they have a right to speak out on it.
To think that this was not true would be to speak out against the free market. The free market put in place the opportunity for these people to develop the platforms that they have and so they have through their hard work and sacrifice almost won the opportunity to speak more freely and to a larger stage. Now granted they did not all work hard to get where they are at, but I believe that for many they have. They used the free market to gain a high position in society and so they should be able to speak how they wish and hey, if the market does not like what they say then they will suffer for it. The market can work for them or against them. If people do not like the fact that politics becomes to much a part of sports then the free market will work it out and will create programming and platforms where that is the case. Let’s not shut people up because they speak from their platform and at the same time espouse a free market. The two cannot work together. Let’s leave it up to the market.