Barring another 2000-era ‘hanging Chad’ debacle, chances are the leader of the free world will be decided by the time this column reaches your doorstep.
All of the political mudslinging, junk emails and impossible-to-remove “I voted” stickers will have fallen by the wayside, and us regular folk will have returned to our daily grind.
I for one have always prided myself on studying the pressing issues at hand and casting my vote, once I was old enough to do. It’s both a right and a privilege to let your voice be heard, and as I listen to the unsurprising election coverage while writing this (Romney wins Alabama! Obama wins Delaware! Water is wet!), it’s always cause for optimism to see people piling into the polls regardless of political preference.
With that said: My candidate of choice this year has never lied to me, never misled me, and never magically knew exactly where to mail a campaign packet. I could move to Alaska and still have a manila envelope (always related to my past voting history, of course) stuffed in my mailbox, which always creeped me out.
No, my candidate never crammed my light bill to the back of my mailbox, and always delivered exactly what was promised.
I, Jason Chisari, cast my 2012 vote for…sports. And can you really blame me?
There’s always subplots and side stories surrounding a hyped sporting event, to be sure, but the outcome remains the same no matter the circumstances. A winner and a loser will be determined, and the Earth will continue spinning on its’ axis regardless.
The victory may be triumphant, or the loss might ruin your afternoon (these days I dread my Sunday afternoons as the New York Jets continue their traveling circus), but you still come away from the game untarnished and excited to see your favorite team or athlete learn from the experience. That’s the power of sports, and the reason you will always feel compelled to let your day-to-day life take a backseat for a few hours every week.
But most important of all is the uncanny ability of sports to bring people of all shapes, sizes and beliefs together in a sign of unity that no politician has ever been able to accomplish. And for the residents of Scotland County, you can look no further than the Fighting Scots as a prime example of this fact.
Concerns swirling around our economy, unemployment and overseas conflicts are nowhere to be found when a proud family member watches their son or daughter make a career-defining play. A heated argument between two people on both ends of the political spectrum is replaced by a cheerful hug when those same two people watch the Scots upset a state championship contender in the final minutes of regulation.
Those same people may even have a pro-Democrat or Republican bumper sticker on their car. But in this town, there’s just as good a chance of seeing a “Go Scots!” bumper sticker residing right next to it.
When the Scots take the field this Friday night at home against Lee County, there will undoubtedly be a sea of red (Republican) and blue (Democrat) cramming the stands of Pate Stadium. But it won’t be because of political leanings: It will be because each person stands united in cheering on their hometown team, which coincidentally has both blue and red colors displayed proudly on their jerseys.
My vote for the betterment of this country goes to sports, because I’ve seen firsthand the positive impact that sports can have on communities large and small. And as politics continue to polarize Americans, being a card-carrying Sportitarian becomes more and more appealing with each passing day.
Who cares if I look crazy when I write ‘sports’ on my ballot and check the box next to it? Last I checked, this was a free country and I can vote for who, or what, I please.