It’s Never Too Late To Do The Right Thing

Once again it’s late October and we are left out of the World Series. I don’t buy into the superstitious camp that believes a Cherokee hex is haunting the Atlanta Braves. No, but I do believe we are spiritually undermining  the team, our city, and ourselves by ignoring what we know is wrong.

It’s way past time for our Atlanta Braves to change its moniker! Certainly, it’s not as offensive as the ‘Redskins’, but it is in the same family of  insult and insolence, just the milder, gentler version. Surely legacy and tradition is important, but in sports it certainly isn’t sacred. Franchises abandon cities and their names whenever the fields and the attendance appears greener, and only the deserted fans and towns cry foul. We started in Boston, moved to Milwaukee, and in 1966 embraced Atlanta, where thanks to Ted Turner, cable TV, and an extraordinary pitching staff, the Atlanta Braves became ‘America’s Team’ in the ’90′s.

Speaking of extraordinary players, isn’t it interesting that of all the former great Braves whose numbers have been retired, only Warren Spann and Chipper Jones finished their  illustrious careers as Braves. Niekro, Murphy, Glavine, Smoltz, Maddux, and even Hank ‘The Hammer’ Aaron, all were traded or released to other teams before retiring. Just about business? Just about payroll? Perhaps, but that is a daunting list of revered ballplayers who are praised now but disregarded at the end of their careers. And that is my point. Holding onto a name and insignia that are insulting and disrespectful of another people is insensitive, and insensitivity is contagious and infectious. It spreads ( I’m sure Dan Uggla would agree).

It’s time for the Franchise, the City, and the fans to step up to the plate and make the necessary departure away from the defaming name and chant that ridicules us even more so than Native Americans. Here are my two suggestions that would restore our dignity and be virtually painless:    

   Embrace the current nickname “Bravos” and alter the ‘Tomahawk Chop’ to a standing ovation with an overhead handclap, or let’s just be courageous  enough to drop the ‘s’ and become the Atlanta Brave, which will say loud and clear that we are bold enough, decent enough, and sensitive enough to do the right thing. Atlanta deserves to be “the Home of the Brave”.

 

Submitted by Plemon T. El-Amin

 

One Response »

  1. Whether you fall into one of Holt’s categories of fandom, or some category you like to think is all your own, my hope for every Braves’ fan is that they will become, like me, a die-hard fan. It’s certainly not necessary to enjoy the game, but it is necessary if you want to understand and fully appreciate the finer nuances of the game. Like anything else, the more you know, the more you appreciate. To be a true fan, you should never, ever stop thinking and following the Braves when the regular season or post-season is over. The Atlanta Braves are an organization that functions 365 days a year, and even in the dead of winter, baseball is being played somewhere in the world, trades are being made and considered, strategies formed for next year, and a plethora of other baseball activities are going on . We affectionately call this time of year, the Hot Stove season, because even in the dead of winter, we die-hard fans will gladly sit or stand around a warm stove talking baseball, and we’ll stay there so long because of the subject at hand, that the stove will eventually get HOT! Even if you get burned, it’s well worth it!

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