I have always had a problem with the obsessive attention paid to sports like hockey, football, soccar, and baseball – professional sports predominated by men. Why is it ok to honour and revere these athletes – and further reward them with overinflated salaries -while begrudging respect and decent financial support to single mothers ?
Of course I’m not the only one questioning this and further wondering about its effect on our children’s perception of what our society values and how they feel about themselves. An exhibit exploring the glorification of sports and its effect on the American boy’s psyche is now on at the Andy Warhol Museum of Art in Pittsburgh. It takes a look at the underbelly of sports in the lives of boys and young men and also will feature a July 29th screening of a film entitled, Soccar as never before which documents the life of professional soccar player, whose life was a roller-coaster of personal unhappiness and discord after the spotlight was turned off him.
Here is an interesting and insightful review of the exhibit from the Utne reader by Michael Fallon, called Narcissus of the Ball Field.
In it, Fallon tells of his own experience playing sports as a boy, saying that in “more than eight years of nearly year-round participation in sports, I witnessed anger, aggression, and poor sportsmanship more often than the promised character building”.