By Ken Reed
We at the League of Fans spend a majority of our time addressing the inequities and injustices in sports. Our goal is to push our sports organizations to be more socially responsible in their policymaking, decisionmaking and actions. In short, we want to get the destructive win-at-all-costs (WAAC) and profit-at-all-costs (PAAC) mentalities out of our sports.
In order to keep fighting the good fight in SportsWorld, it’s important to occasionally reflect on why we care so much about sports to begin with.
The following “sports enjoyment scorecard” can help all of us put sports in their proper perspective. It also has the side benefit of providing sports reformers and activists motivation to continue the fight for a more fair sports landscape.
When it comes to sports, we all need to occasionally reset our priorities. Do this: Sit down with a pen and paper and ask yourself, “Why do I like sports? What makes me happy when I’m involved in sports?” (If you have kids in sports, ask them to do it as well. Their answers could be enlightening.)
List everything (including winning and playing well). Consider things like: being with people I like who share my passion; enjoying the sporting venue (whether a beautiful golf course, youth soccer field, bike trail, or classic stadium); the competitive nature of sports (win or lose); the exercise, recreation and entertainment aspects of sport; the excitement and spectacle of sporting events, learning about myself and others, developing skills, etc. Whatever rings true for you.
When you’re done, give each item on your list a % with your total adding up to 100. It should help you keep winning in perspective, and be happier the next time you participate in sports, or even watch a sporting event.
And hopefully, it gives you — even if just a little — more incentive to get out in your community and fight for justice in sports.
— Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of FansPrint
- League of Fans is a sports reform project founded by Ralph Nader to fight for the higher principles of justice, fair play, equal opportunity and civil rights in sports; and to encourage safety and civic responsibility in sports industry and culture.