August 2, 2012

Patriotic Zombies

Filed under: humanity, Sports, Strange — Tags: , , , — skeptisys @ 11:04 am

New Yorkers love to make fun of people in the middle of America for blindly doing what they are told.

Stop at the intersection!  Don’t park here!  Go to war with those brown people!  Don’t be Gay!  Go to church every Sunday!  Cover your heart!  Give up your freedoms!  Do this!  Do that!  Don’t do that!  While North Korea, the old Soviet Russia, and Kansas says, “yes sir!”, New Yorkers respond, “oh yeah?  says who?”  An eerie event at the Mets game told me those days of NY pride may be over.

Eating overpriced pizza and drinking beer with my significant other on a busy hot Saturday at Citi Field before a Mets game.  Thousands of fans were bustling around us in the left field concessions, an area full of food, alcohol, souvenirs, and carnival games such as ‘dunk the poor college kid wearing the opposing team’s jersey’.  The sound of a crowd of loud baseball fans talking loudly all at once made it difficult to hear each other without shouting.  Then suddenly, it stopped dead.  No moving, no talking.  Not just some people, but literally everybody but us 2 turned to an quiet immobile statue.

As we looked up to see thousands of people stopped dead where they stood, listening to the National Anthem quietly…we panicked and ran.  Not one person seemed to notice us, the only moving people in the area, dodging their stiff bodies.  ‘How much time will our baseball caps save our lives if they start to eat our brains?’, we thought as we danced around the statues.

Then, as suddenly as it began, the silence ended.  The National Anthem had ended and the multitude of people started moving again loudly, all at once.

I wanted to compare them to well-trained dogs, but even dogs move in anticipation of the next command.  Trillions of dollars spent in PR have turned this country into obedient sheep, and I am afraid.  And apparently, with only 2 of 40,000 in this sample size, I am in the minority.

We are still freaked by this event.  Are we becoming the new Soviet Union, with blind patriotism and poverty replacing freedom and happiness?

March 18, 2009

Puerto Rico and False Patriotism

Filed under: Sports — Tags: , , , — skeptisys @ 11:20 am
Roberto Clemente American Baseball Hero

Roberto Clemente American Baseball Hero

Puerto Rico is under United States rule, and has been since 1898, when Spain ceded Puerto Rico to the United States.  For over 91 years, Puerto Ricans have been U.S. citizens and have fought in wars with U.S. involvement, including WWI.  The head of state for Puerto Rico is President Barack Obama.  Everyone born in Puerto Rico is eligible to be President of the United States.

So why are there screams that Americans need to root against Puerto Rico in the World Baseball Classic (WBC)  in order to be Patriotic Americans?

Puerto Rico played against team USA twice in this year’s WBC.  In those 2 games Puerto Rico outscored team USA 16-7.  Even so, all major American news sources acted like Puerto Rico was team Al-Qaeda.  See some of the crap Sports Illustrated or Wall Street Journal squats out.

In population numbers, Puerto Rico is similar to Oregon or Kentucky.  Imagine Oregon fielding a baseball team that crushes the rest of the United States.   I am sure the mainstream news wave would then flood us with pro-Oregon underdog emotions.  Why not for Puerto Rico?

I know rooting for a Baseball team is empty patriotism, but it does have emotional value at a time when truly important patriotic issues are waning.  Freedom of speech is dangerously low.  Our government does not represent the American people over large faceless international corporations trying to suck our money and rights away.  Unemployment and poverty are up dramatically.  Distrust in government and media is at an alltime high.  Food and water quality are dropping as quickly as quality of health.  Other countries no longer see us as kind, generous, and helpful – but instead dangerous killers.  We have to search underground sources just to find art quality better than Rocky X or Mall Cop.  Real patriotism is working for these causes, not rooting for muscular men in tights.

…but I do feel a little better watching Puerto Rico do well in the WBC.  Congratulations, Team Puerto Rico, for playing so well and representing the United States so proudly.

Puerto Rican Pride Day parade in Manhattan

Puerto Rican Pride Day parade in Manhattan

Roberto Clemente Wheaties Box from Hispanic PR Wire.

Puerto Rico Pride Day photo via Baltimore Sun.

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