Monday, March 17, 2008

The President Will Throw Out The First Pitch At Nationals Park; To Respect, Cheer or Boo?

The Washington Nationals are ushering in a new era as they prepare to open the new ballpark, and there’s going to be a special guest to open up festivities. The commander-in-chief, President George W. Bush, is scheduled to throw out the ceremonial first pitch opening night at Nationals Park on March 30th before they host the Atlanta Braves, team owner Mark Lerner disclosed this weekend.

The president also threw out the first pitch for the Washington Nationals on April 14th, 2005, when the team played its first game at Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium after the franchise relocated from Montreal.

Anyhow, the Washington Nationals blog, Nats320 has a spirited debate amongst readers as what paying fans in attendance should do when the president, or much less anyone in authority should when they kick off a sporting event.

Here are some of the responses in the comments in the post:
"I can't believe Bush has the guts to show his face in public after all of the damage he has caused to America and the world.

I for one will be booing myself hoarse."
"The point is that this is---or at least should be---more than mere politics. On a similar note, I should say that I had the opportunity to boo Mayor Adrian Fenty at the home opener last year. After all, if he had his way, there would be no stadium and no team for us to enjoy. However, I felt that since that battle was over, something more important was at stake so I applauded. So did most of the other fans. If for some reason, the POTUS cannot throw out the first ball in Washington on Opening Day, the elected mayor in my opinion would be a fine substitute."
"I would, NEVER clap for him, and honestly having spoken to both of you about your views, I'm disappointed that you'd toss your well conceived convictions aside so easily. Granted, the "office holder" of the president of the United States should throw out the first pitch at each and every Nats home opener, however this one deserves no applause. I, with what I imagine is the vast majority of those in attendance, will be practicing my free speech that night. Let him show up and get what he is due."
Interesting and divergent opinion. The comments above just show how different our beliefs are in America.

This may be an unpopular opinion here, but people should have the right to voice their feelings when the President or someone of authority kicks off a sporting event.

Sorry, if that may offend.

In parts of the world where one could be shot or be considered a dissident for voicing their opinion against a leader, in most places in America, citizens can do so peacefully without fear of reprisal.

I personally have respect for the office of the President, no matter my beliefs, and I would never boo him in public; however, to expect people to stand at attention for him and cheer when they can do otherwise is pretty un-American.

1 comment:

hrb said...

Agreed. When you are a political figure, you should expect to get booed by some portion of the audience.

I'd boo the hell out of him.

But then I'd boo the hell out of Justin Timberlake too.

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