As a rule, one should never bring up politics on a sports blog. For that matter, here's a comprehensive list of places where one should never bring up politics:
At Christmas dinner, when you know your relatives have a wildly differing interpretation of current events.
At the dog park, with strangers who solely desire an escape from their cramped apartments.
At a bar, where everyone is much drunker than you.
On Facebook. (Please stop, you know who you are)
Screaming in public.
And again, on a sports blog, where you're sure to alienate readers.
Some days, these days, it's all I can do to keep my head above water. You read the news -- you open the door, you open your eyes as you wake -- and the insanity and hatred comes pouring in. This person screaming this, that person swearing that. Discrimination, violence in the streets and at political rallies, vitriol.
Is this what we've become? A writhing, mangy pack of dogs fighting over scraps of digitized talking points? Regardless of your political positioning, you have to admit that we, as Americans, have slid into a long, dark fever dream. Racial beatings in the streets of Kansas? Attacks on protesters? Splits within political parties, with each side beating their chests and proclaiming victory at every stage?
I am disgusted. I am sickened.
And in this moment of disgust, in this moment of sickness, you can't help but try and tune it all out. Try and shut the floodgates before they rend your sanity to pieces.
So, what can you do?
Myself, I turn to literature. I turn to music. I turn to my wife, and my two cats. I pinch myself and remember that life is greater than the shit-show currently enveloping this country. My life has greater depth than the latest news show, with its screaming judgements.
Honestly, at times, I turn to basketball.
As Golden State Warriors fans, we have been blessed this year. More than once, I've sought refuge within some seemingly meaningless Wednesday night game. The precision with which they approach their craft is inspirational. Their commitment to detail is revelatory. It is healing.
Basketball, and sports as a whole, have the potential to teach us about our potential. Think you're too small to compete? Think you're under-prepared for the harsh truths of the day? Watch a ball game. Watch humans excel at the height of their powers. Take their prowess, their talent, and apply it to your own life. Watch them do something, dammit, other than complain. Do something other than get overly-adrenalined about a religion, or about someone with a different skin complexion than you, or about God knows what...
Listen to Bach, take a breath. Take a walk or hang out with some good friends. Watch a game, enjoy neutrality.
Unplug from this circus.