With President Barack Obama surprising nobody and winning a second term, it is hard to believe that Boston’s most famous tea partier is in a very celebratory mood. I do not know whether or not Boston Bruins Goalie Tim Thomas is a Mitt Romney supporter (nor do I care), however, he has made it clear that he is no fan of Obama.
It was in January of this year when Thomas fired the shot heard round the hockey world, when he snubbed Obama and decided not to make the obligatory trip to the White House with his Bruin teammates. Thomas was one of only two Americans on the NHL Stanley Cup champs, and was the only team member to be a no-show to the DC shindig.
Being a political activist for the Tea Party, one would think that Thomas would have jumped at the opportunity to visit the seat of the government. Who knows? Maybe he would have learned a thing or two about how politics really work, or how they don’t work. Instead, he used the occasion to be a party pooper and protest the policies of the current administration.
Subsequently, Thomas explained his reasons for backing out. However, it was too little too late, since he had already set off a pissing contest between those who buy into the dog and pony show of partisan politics, keeping the masses distracted and divided.
As a hockey fan, I am a bit more interested in Thomas’ save percentage than his political affiliations. The only reason I even know the name Tim Thomas is because of what he has accomplished on the ice, not because of his tangentinal rants on Facebook. Political activism is healthy to a democracy, but when you are using someone else’s gig as your soapbox, it’s not cool.
At a not so spring-chickenish 38 years of age, Thomas is nearing the end of his career and has plenty of years in front of him to dabble in politics when he finally decides to hang up his waffle. Why is this ‘wanna be’ politician in such a rush to enter a field which is better suited for older people anyway? It would not be much of a surprise if Thomas was being used as a pawn because of his popularity.
Many notable athletes, such as Bill Bradley of the New York Knicks and Steve Largent of the Seattle Seahawks, successfully entered the field of politics after their playing days were over. Much to their credit, Bradley and Largent did not go around espousing their political viewpoints during their playing days. Appropriately, they waited until after their retirements to dive into the political arena. There is a time and place for everything – even with Facebook and Twitter on 24 hour call.
On the back of Thomas’ goalie mask is a well known historic American saying: ‘Don’t Tread on Me’. Maybe Thomas should abide by these words and stop treading on his teammates and fans in order to satisfy his own personal political agenda. When active professional athletes start moonlighting as political pundits, they run the risk of treading all over their supporters.