The murder-suicide involving Kansas City Chiefs LB Jovan Belcher is a situation where the sports world and tragedy once again intersect to form an uncomfortable union, to say the least. This is not the first occurrence where rogue human behavior has many scratching their heads and asking why; and certainly it will not be the last.
There are those who called the incident unthinkable, even though domestic abuse and gun violence in the United States is anything but unthinkable. Others took the moral high ground and believed the Carolina Panthers versus Kansas City Chiefs NFL game at Arrowhead Stadium should have been cancelled, even though a high level of morality has never done much to pay the rent in this society. Then there are others who agreed with the game being played as some sort of healing ritual, even though time is the only thing which eventually heals all wounds…or so they say.
The bottom line here is that football is a business involving human beings, who will always have instances of tragedy associated with their existence. Expecting games to be cancelled every time someone associated with a sport dies an unexpected death does not really make much sense. Even in cases where it is shocking, such as Saturday’s incident, is death really that unexpected?
Do you really expect the football world to stop turning because a player or someone else closely associated with the game does something which makes little sense to others? When a tragedy occurs on the field, such as a player being paralyzed or seriously injured, is the game immediately cancelled? Sure, the two incidents may not compare in scope, but they are both devastating tragedies.
As for those who are going on about the right thing to do was to cancel the game, are they doing the right thing by exploiting this tragedy to elevate themselves to a higher ground? For these individuals, it is not okay to play the game because of a tragedy, but it is okay to use this same incident to show to the world they are a person of exemplary character?
Approximately 36 hours after the shootings, NBC broadcaster Bob Costas used this incident to throw his support behind gun control. Costas could not even wait until the blood had dried before taking his self-righteous stance. Such is the hypocrisy which is not only prevalent, but openly welcomed in today’s disgustingly politically correct society.
Just as in any other difficult situation which life serves up, there is no playbook on how to properly proceed here. There is a group of people coming together and making difficult decisions which they feel are in the best interests of the collective. The least we can do is respect these decisions and be grateful that we are not burdened with the heavy task of making them.
The show must go on and, like it or not, the show takes priority over the life of anyone associated with it. That is the way it always has been, and the way it always will be.