Affirming Athletes Essay

1111 words - 4 pages

The World Series, NBA Finals, Final Four, Super Bowl, National Championship, College World Series, The Masters, these are the ultimate competitive goals for both athletes and fans. America loves to watch these highly competitive sporting events. From ancient times to modern day, sports have always been a part of the makeup of society. Beginning with the Native American sportsmen “who competed for religious, medicinal, and gambling purposes” sports of old and new have continued to change and evolve in society’s culture (sports). Sports over the years have advanced both in positive and in negative ways, not only in rules, but in attention of society.
With American’s love for sports, no matter the steepness of the price, gung-ho fans have been normally willing to pay the price of the ticket to attend their favorite game. However, the trend to “take me out to the ballgame” has started to diminish with the soaring cost of the whole package involved in attending a game. When fans are faced with increasingly high ticket prices and hefty parking fees, many disgruntled supporters are seeking to watch the game on their 42-inch television and provide their own popcorn, peanuts, and cokes. (Page 139) This new trend started with sports becoming a business. In fact, the business of sports has become one of the largest in the nation earning $400 billion (Burton 125). This business side of sports has crept up on sports consumers little by little. In 1958, the NFL commissioner realized the multimillion-dollar advertising investment that could be made through connecting the NFL and television. With this realization, prime time sports, such as ABC’s Monday Night Football, have now become a weekly standard (Burton 137). Additionally, sky boxes and luxury suites were introduced with the creation of the Eighth Wonder of the World, the Houston Astrodome. Likewise, “Nike put sports, marketing, and business and pop culture together in a new and dynamic way” (Burton 127). Last but not least, another example of the changing trend of sports and big business is the 24-hour sports conglomerate of ESPN with the first entertainment network.
Most sports fans in society not only have a favorite team that they love to follow and support, they probably also have a favorite hero on that team. Over the years, many of these sports heroes have been great role models and have exhibited outstanding performances. These Heroes also have held up worthy American code of ethics. Subsequently, there are other players who fit the opposite side of that coin, with corrupt, dishonest, and illegal conduct. Legends such as Michael Jordan, Wayne Gretzky and John Elway have “used their fame and their names to spread the wealth to those less blessed with their goodness and their charity” (Scott105). On the opposite of this coin, however, our role models are crashing and burning. The current trend has many team stars being recruited from urban America. Edwards says, “I don't...

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