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Letter: Beyond fun and games

The inane saga involving former N.E. Patriots receiver Aaron Hernandez has prompted a (seemingly) unnecessary gutcheck for a six-state region that is understandably gutchecked-out. With nothing to prove as fans, cold-blooded murder insists we acknowledge where the $75 game jersey a kid faithfully wears actually comes from. Perhaps a belief that following (and investing in) pro sports is an attempt to balance the stresses and leisures of life. Admiration of individuals in the context of team achievement, united purpose, competition and adversity. Maybe to connect generations through participation: shared passion for a team or player that channels formative experience or tough communication into memories. It’s provincial, it’s relatable, it’s debatable.

Pro sports doesn’t matter, right? Explain that to parents and young kids grappling with a star’s senseless dive into hell. A number of New England sports figures in the past established a tradition of professional class and exist in our memories in a state of grace. Ted Williams. Yaz. Bill Russell. Bird. Role models. Add Tedy Bruschi, Troy Brown, Mike Vrabel and Tom Brady. What happened to PATRIOT WAY, fans? Who are the names on our kids’ jerseys? How can we redirect our investment to reflect our grief and disappointment in this furthest place from a state of grace?



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