Mamas, don’t let your sports heroes grow up to be Trumpers.
It’s difficult to learn that your one-time favorite athletes, like Jeremy Roenick and Curt Schilling, are complete and utter shitheads. While not much of an athlete, 50 Cent is the most charismatic celebrity I’ve ever met, and his backing of Trump is a reminder that we’re dealing not just with racial division, but class warfare.
We lost another one on Saturday, as Mike Piazza joined a Trump rally in Reading, Pa.
Piazza, the greatest-hitting catcher of all time not named Josh Gibson, joined the ranks of Brett Favre and Bobby Orr as sports Hall of Famers and these other bozos who cast their lot with Trump. As Deadspin’s Chuck Modiano pointed out, this was quite a surprise from the apolitical Favre.
Hockey legend Orr came out for Trump with a full-page ad in the Manchester Union Leader on Friday, saying, “No leader anywhere signed up with the idea that dealing with a worldwide pandemic would be a part of their mandate,” Orr writes in his ad that ran in Friday’s New Hampshire Union Leader. “The attacks on our president have been unrelenting since the day he took office.”
The Canadian-born Orr (who has raised his family in the U.S.) also said, “[Trump’s] the kind of teammate I want.”
Funny, I thought hockey culture was all about accountability. Unless he means the rich helping the rich get richer (see Jeff Bezos), Orr’s words don’t make any sense, as Trump has never worked hard or made sacrifices in his entire life.
As for Piazza, he was last seen running a proud Italian soccer team into the ground. Maybe bankruptcy is the bond he shares with Trump.
Trump acknowledged Piazza in the crowd at Reading, once a thriving tourist city, then dubbed the “poorest small city in America” in 2011. A more recent study shows it suffering with a 15.5 percent unemployment rate, with 35.4 percent of the population living in poverty. Pennsylvania has had 213,000 cases of coronavirus, with 8,883 deaths so far, and cases are spiking, with 2,490 new cases reported on Friday, as we are nearing 100,000 new cases a day in the United States.
Nevertheless, Trump will undoubtedly find many receptive citizens there. Pennsylvania went for Trump in 2016, despite the fact that its two largest cities (Philadelphia and Pittsburgh) are overwhelmingly Democratic. White grievance of course is the major motivating factor for most Trump supporters who vote against their own interests from a financial or health care standpoint.
Guys like Piazza, Orr and Favre certainly didn’t have limited opportunities, but now find easy scapegoats in immigrants and minorities — not that ignorance and hatred are ever justifiable even for those less fortunate.