Football and Politics

Anyone who knows me well knows this: my blood runs black and gold. So, when my dad called to say that Pittsburgh Steeler's linebacker James Harrison wouldn't accompany his Super-Bowl-winning team to the White House to meet Obama (he didn't attend the 2006 meeting with Bush either), I was looking forward to talking about two of my biggest loves at once - politics and Steeler football.

Alas, Troglopundit beat me to it. Smart man that he is, I don't agree with Trog's conclusion that Harrison's position means he thinks "merit sucks." Considering Harrison was the defensive player of the year--a meritorious achievement, indeed--I think we can safely say that's not the case. Watch this awesome video for further proof.

Merit aside, what is particularly interesting about all this is a question posed to reporters by Harrison himself:

"Let me ask you a question. Why is it a big issue now that I'm not going if it wasn't a big issue the last time?"

Why indeed.

I don't want to turn this into one of those "because the media has a permanent ticket on the Barack Obama Bandwagon Express" rants, but in this case, that may be the most logical explanation. Harrison doesn't want to meet the Big O! A pox upon him, says the media. Where was their outrage when Harrison turned down the opportunity to me G.W. in 2006? As Harrison himself notes, it was noticeably absent:
I'm surprised they're making a big deal about it. 'Oh my, James Harrison isn't going to the White House, he must be a devil worshiper.'
(I'm sure the media would love to attribute the move to racism, buuuuut since Harrison's black, they've got to go with the devil worship. Of course, it makes sense: he is refusing to meet with the "Messiah.")

Further to his credit, he goes on to say that he's a football player who has nothing to do with politics. Hat tip to Mr. Harrison for recognizing that fame and fortune do not a political savant make. Someone should pass the memo along to all those red-carpeters turned liberal spokesmen.

Harrison sums up the story with this: "Really, I could care less about the reaction. That's my decision and I'm sticking with it."

And, while we're on the subject of Pittsburgh, this is too weird not to share: Pittsburgh teen uses biology class snake as a jump rope.


  1. Steelers fan huh? I knew there was a reason I liked you.

  2. You're mother will be glad you changed subjects!!

  3. Allow me to interject the most obvious question that seems unasked or answered (thankfully, Carnac the Magnificent mumbled the answer to me before he gave the question): What in the wide, wide world of sports does hanging out with the Super Bowl winners have to do with running a country? The answer is "No one is running the country," of course.

    Harrison's choice is his own. That our media cannot understand his choice and chooses instead to dwell on it, indicates their stunning lack of willingness to see the validity of those choices they so often trumpet. And while we have accepted the glad-handing of successful athletes as part of the perfuctory Presidential process, what about it is different from the silly Corrine Brown entering her "gradulations" to the Florida Gators. It's silly and sadly impossible to remove from our political process.

  4. Much ado about nothing. Funny how there was no outrage when he bailed on meeting Bush. Oh wait never mind...

  5. Anonymous23.5.09

    I hope youll throw some love to the Pens also!

  6. Eventhough my blood does not run Black and Gold but instead, crimson *For Alabama Crimson Tide), I have to ask the all important question of why the heck the Steelers were invited to hang with the President?

    And secondly, was Osama there as well?