Adam Gold

This isn't about sports

Posted September 11, 2013

Wednesday marks the 12th anniversary of one of the darkest days -- one of the darkest periods -- in our nation's history. The terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 left us feeling angry, scared, vulnerable and uncertain about our future. How would life forever change? How would those attacks alter our day-to-day? What would the effect be on our economy? How would we, as a nation, as Americans, react?

I think it's fair to say that a dozen years ago, everything changed -- some things for the better, some for the worse. But, it's fairly obvious that 09-11-01 is a line of demarcation that separates eras of American history.

I'll tell you what today isn't, nor should it ever be. Today isn't a time to correlate those events with sports. The anniversary of the attacks on the Pentagon and World Trade Center and the crash that killed hundreds aboard United Airlines flight 93 that was bound for Washington, DC was a moment in time that had nothing to do with sports. It was about our culture, our way of life, our freedom and -- unfortunately -- our politics.  

The further we remove ourselves from that date 12 years ago however, the more the sports world gloms onto that tragedy as some sort of a healing mechanism. Since when? How exactly does a football game, or a baseball game or a golf tournament make the pain go away for a city with a giant hole where two skyscrapers once stood? How does sports repair the two-fifths of the Pentagon that were blown away by that American Airlines jet in northern Virginia?

Sports is NOT a diversion. Sports is simply part of our lives, assuming you choose to make it such. Sports is simply another form of entertainment, when you boil it all down, like music or movies or television or bird-watching, and it was never designed as a diversion.

The same people who spend their time using sports to reflect back on that day -- those weeks -- are the ones who are the first to remind you in the face of other tragedies that it "puts things in perspective." I'm sorry if I beg to differ. Tragic, life-altering events such as the attacks of September 11, 2001 shouldn't be needed to reassess our priorities.  

Yes, the National Football League and Major League Baseball shut down for the week. It caused the postponement of the second week of the NFL season and helped usher in MLB's first November World Series. But, what choice did the league's have in the matter? Four of the 62 franchises, plus the headquarters of both leagues were based in the New York metropolitan area, and another was based just outside our nation's capital. On top of that, in the wake of these events, both leagues had to take a hard look at venue security and both entities acted properly and with respect considering the circumstances.

Today, however, you only wish the sports community would operate with the same level of respect that the NFL and MLB did a dozen years ago. The anniversary of when our lives were forever altered should not be a reason to drum up business, like Tumbledown Trails Golf Course in Wisconsin, who offered a $9.11 greens fee for rounds played today (That deal and subsequent coupon have since been discontinued). Today should not be a day for dumbed-down conversations about how sports helped us heal from those events. It didn't.

First of all, I'm not certain we have healed from what happened 12 years ago. And second, only time is going to make that pain go away, if it ever truly does. I would guess, for those really impacted by what happened that Tuesday morning in the late summer of 2001 -- firefighters, police officers, transit workers, government employees, airline passengers, families, etc. -- the healing may never come.  

When I recall what happened 12 years ago -- where I was, how I felt -- sports never enters my mind.  I think only of my brother who worked in New York City's financial district, three blocks from the Twin Towers and the seven hours that passed before we found out that he was safe. That he was sitting in a bar in lower Manhattan watching the news on television as I was 450 miles away is only slightly amusing. The image of watching symbols of our nation destroyed is what will forever be burned in my memory, not how emotionally charged it was when the Mets and Braves played the first game in New York following the resumption of play.

Sports is simply a part of some of our lives, and even in the face of such atrocities, life has no choice but to go on. Let's do the right thing, the sensible thing, and not try to filter one of the most terrifying days in American history through the prism of the games that we watch.

14 Comments

Please with your WRAL.com account to comment on this story. You also will need a Facebook account to comment.

Oldest First
View all
  • VT1994Hokie Sep 12, 2013

    Nice job Adam. I was principal of a large high school when an Assistant Principal called me, and told me to turn on the TV. I watched for just a few minutes. I than made an all call announcement on the PA system. I asked that all teachers tune in and watch. After 5 minutes, I asked the school to say a silent prayer for all of these people that lost their lives during this tradegy. America came together after this for a while, but not long enough in my opinion.

  • dmccall Sep 11, 2013

    Nice post, Adam. Couldn't agree more.

  • Turtlehead Sep 11, 2013

    Right on AG ! We have been friends for decades and I never post or call in. But I am compelled to agree with you... to a point.. My personal story is not relevant. Sports are merely entertainment but I do not completely disagree with the sports media/community perspective and reflection on the events of the day and the major sports community reaction. For many, who did not have a direct horrific impact, the sports media is another way to remind us of what occurred. Not to be glorified or marketed (like the $9.11 deal), but just like all of America, it is appropriate to recollect the impacts in each segment of society. I applaud everyone for taking the opportunity for not letting us forget - your article is a great example of how to reach the 'sports' enthusiasts. Too bad there still aren't American flags on every overpass and in the back windshields of every vehicle. - Keta

  • schiess Sep 11, 2013

    By the way iam not a towel boy,I have been on these threads for 6 yrs

  • schiess Sep 11, 2013

    Adam ,you have always been a class act .your story hits my heart bro ,my wife lost 90 + friends and associates on this day and anyone of you go back north where you came from ignorant you know what types can crawl back into your who won the war bs.we were attacked by spineless walks of life,show some compassion or shut your face .my wife worked for fiduciary trust in tower b,so if you all want to pile on then so be it.adam thank you again my friend from nutley.....paulie SCHIESS cary North Carolina ,former northerner .

  • NEVER apologize for being white Sep 11, 2013

    Then why did you write it? To hear yourself talk, thats why. Useless, meaningless, space. If I wanted to give thought to this tragedy, I wouldn't have clicked on this story. I was interested in the SPORTS area of the so called news.

    Ole Adam Mold Boyeee! Please go back to up north where you came from. Please!

  • NothingButNet Sep 11, 2013

    View quoted thread


    I agree with you about sports being a diversion, as well not disrespecting the tragedy that many Americans have suffered - that golf course in Wisconsin that offered a "$9.11" greens fee is disgusting.

    I also agree with Jacob - that while America lost something as a result of 9/11 (a sense of security for one), we DID gain something, in that we came together in an effort to support our country and begin the heaing process. Also agree with Jacob about providing benefits to ALL Vets.

  • JACKSONSAWYER IS SUPREME Sep 11, 2013

    View quoted thread


    actually to provide benefits to all vets-WWII vets waited a lifetime for some kind of help!!!

  • JACKSONSAWYER IS SUPREME Sep 11, 2013

    View quoted thread


    THE USA ALSO GAINED SOMETHING THAT DAY-- IT EXPOSED US THAT WE WILL RALLY WHEN FACED WITH ADVERSITY, NOW IN JUST 12 YEARS WE TEND TO DRIFTING BACK TO BENDING OVER BACKWARDS TO HELP OUR ENEMIES.

  • kmorcomeback2 Sep 11, 2013

    Adam......this is a little too much. I think you are better than this my friend.

More...

 

 

  • The Ryder Cup

    Tomorrow at 9:00 am on WRAL-TV

  • CFB: Duke vs. Virginia

    Tomorrow at 12:30 pm on FOX50

  • CFB: Oklahoma vs. TCU

    Tomorrow at 5:00 pm on FOX50

  • CFB: Arizona State at USC

    Tomorrow at 8:00 pm on FOX50

  • The Logan Zone

    Sunday at 11:00 am on WRAL-TV

  • The Ryder Cup

    Sunday at 12:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NFL: Panthers at Atlanta

    Sunday at 1:00 pm on FOX50

  • NFL: Kansas City at Pittsburgh

    Sunday at 8:20 pm on WRAL-TV

  • CFB: NC State vs. Wake Forest

    Tomorrow at 3:30 pm on WRAL-FM

AP Top 25
Thu, Sept 29
14Final
6
42
Fri, Sept 30
7
6:00 PT7:00 MT8:00 CT9:00 ET1:00 GMT9:00 北京时间6:00 MST8:00 EST
Preview
10
Sat, Oct 1
9:00 PT10:00 MT11:00 CT12:00 ET4:00 GMT12:00 北京时间9:00 MST11:00 EST
Preview
20
 
14
9:00 PT10:00 MT11:00 CT12:00 ET4:00 GMT12:00 北京时间9:00 MST11:00 EST
Preview
 
13
9:00 PT10:00 MT11:00 CT12:00 ET4:00 GMT12:00 北京时间9:00 MST11:00 EST
Preview
 
9:00 PT10:00 MT11:00 CT12:00 ET4:00 GMT12:00 北京时间9:00 MST11:00 EST
Preview
2
 
22
9:00 PT10:00 MT11:00 CT12:00 ET4:00 GMT12:00 北京时间9:00 MST11:00 EST
Preview
 
23
9:00 PT10:00 MT11:00 CT12:00 ET4:00 GMT12:00 北京时间9:00 MST11:00 EST
Preview
 
12:30 PT1:30 MT2:30 CT3:30 ET7:30 GMT3:30 北京时间12:30 MST2:30 EST
Preview
12
 
11
12:30 PT1:30 MT2:30 CT3:30 ET7:30 GMT3:30 北京时间12:30 MST2:30 EST
Preview
25
 
8
12:30 PT1:30 MT2:30 CT3:30 ET7:30 GMT3:30 北京时间12:30 MST2:30 EST
Preview
4
 
12:30 PT1:30 MT2:30 CT3:30 ET7:30 GMT3:30 北京时间12:30 MST2:30 EST
Preview
15
 
9
1:00 PT2:00 MT3:00 CT4:00 ET8:00 GMT4:00 北京时间1:00 MST3:00 EST
Preview
 
2:00 PT3:00 MT4:00 CT5:00 ET9:00 GMT5:00 北京时间2:00 MST4:00 EST
Preview
21
 
18
3:00 PT4:00 MT5:00 CT6:00 ET10:00 GMT6:00 北京时间3:00 MST5:00 EST
Preview
 
4:00 PT5:00 MT6:00 CT7:00 ET11:00 GMT7:00 北京时间4:00 MST6:00 EST
Preview
1
 
4:00 PT5:00 MT6:00 CT7:00 ET11:00 GMT7:00 北京时间4:00 MST6:00 EST
Preview
16
 
3
5:00 PT6:00 MT7:00 CT8:00 ET12:00 GMT8:00 北京时间5:00 MST7:00 EST
Preview
5
 
17
5:00 PT6:00 MT7:00 CT8:00 ET12:00 GMT8:00 北京时间5:00 MST7:00 EST
Preview
 
19
5:00 PT6:00 MT7:00 CT8:00 ET12:00 GMT8:00 北京时间5:00 MST7:00 EST
Preview
 
7:15 PT8:15 MT9:15 CT10:15 ET2:15 GMT10:15 北京时间7:15 MST9:15 EST
Preview
24
 
NFL Scoreboard
Thursday, Sep. 29
Miami7Final
Cincinnati22
Sunday, Oct. 2
Indianapolis 6:30 PT7:30 MT8:30 CT9:30 ET13:30 GMT9:30 北京时间6:30 MST8:30 EST8:30 CT17:30 UAE9:30 ET12:30
Jacksonville 
 
Carolina 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET17:00 GMT1:00 北京时间10:00 MST12:00 EST12:00 CT21:00 UAE13:00 ET16:00
Atlanta 
 
Oakland 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET17:00 GMT1:00 北京时间10:00 MST12:00 EST12:00 CT21:00 UAE13:00 ET16:00
Baltimore 
 
Detroit 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET17:00 GMT1:00 北京时间10:00 MST12:00 EST12:00 CT21:00 UAE13:00 ET16:00
Chicago 
 
Tennessee 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET17:00 GMT1:00 北京时间10:00 MST12:00 EST12:00 CT21:00 UAE13:00 ET16:00
Houston 
 
Buffalo 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET17:00 GMT1:00 北京时间10:00 MST12:00 EST12:00 CT21:00 UAE13:00 ET16:00
New England 
 
Seattle 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET17:00 GMT1:00 北京时间10:00 MST12:00 EST12:00 CT21:00 UAE13:00 ET16:00
NY Jets 
 
Cleveland 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET17:00 GMT1:00 北京时间10:00 MST12:00 EST12:00 CT21:00 UAE13:00 ET16:00
Washington 
 
Denver 1:05 PT2:05 MT3:05 CT4:05 ET20:05 GMT4:05 北京时间1:05 MST3:05 EST3:05 CT0:05 UAE (+1)16:05 ET19:05
Tampa Bay 
 
Los Angeles 1:25 PT2:25 MT3:25 CT4:25 ET20:25 GMT4:25 北京时间1:25 MST3:25 EST3:25 CT0:25 UAE (+1)16:25 ET19:25
Arizona 
 
New Orleans 1:25 PT2:25 MT3:25 CT4:25 ET20:25 GMT4:25 北京时间1:25 MST3:25 EST3:25 CT0:25 UAE (+1)16:25 ET19:25
San Diego 
 
Dallas 1:25 PT2:25 MT3:25 CT4:25 ET20:25 GMT4:25 北京时间1:25 MST3:25 EST3:25 CT0:25 UAE (+1)16:25 ET19:25
San Francisco 
 
Kansas City 5:30 PT6:30 MT7:30 CT8:30 ET0:30 GMT8:30 北京时间5:30 MST7:30 EST7:30 CT4:30 UAE (+1)20:30 ET23:30
Pittsburgh 
Monday, Oct. 3
NY Giants 5:30 PT6:30 MT7:30 CT8:30 ET0:30 GMT8:30 北京时间5:30 MST7:30 EST7:30 CT4:30 UAE (+1)20:30 ET23:30
Minnesota 
 
NHL Preseason
Toronto 4:00 PT5:00 MT6:00 CT7:00 ET23:00 GMT7:00 北京时间4:00 MST6:00 EST3:00 UAE (+1)19:00 ET20:00 BRT
Buffalo 
 
Chicago 4:00 PT5:00 MT6:00 CT7:00 ET23:00 GMT7:00 北京时间4:00 MST6:00 EST3:00 UAE (+1)19:00 ET20:00 BRT
Pittsburgh 
 
Boston 4:30 PT5:30 MT6:30 CT7:30 ET23:30 GMT7:30 北京时间4:30 MST6:30 EST3:30 UAE (+1)19:30 ET20:30 BRT
Detroit 
 
Tampa Bay 4:30 PT5:30 MT6:30 CT7:30 ET23:30 GMT7:30 北京时间4:30 MST6:30 EST3:30 UAE (+1)19:30 ET20:30 BRT
Carolina 
 
Dallas 5:00 PT6:00 MT7:00 CT8:00 ET0:00 GMT8:00 北京时间5:00 MST7:00 EST4:00 UAE (+1)20:00 ET21:00 BRT
St. Louis 
 
Edmonton 5:00 PT6:00 MT7:00 CT8:00 ET0:00 GMT8:00 北京时间5:00 MST7:00 EST4:00 UAE (+1)20:00 ET21:00 BRT
Winnipeg 
 
Vancouver 6:00 PT7:00 MT8:00 CT9:00 ET1:00 GMT9:00 北京时间6:00 MST8:00 EST5:00 UAE (+1)21:00 ET22:00 BRT
Calgary 
 
Los Angeles 6:00 PT7:00 MT8:00 CT9:00 ET1:00 GMT9:00 北京时间6:00 MST8:00 EST5:00 UAE (+1)21:00 ET22:00 BRT
Colorado 
 
Arizona 7:30 PT8:30 MT9:30 CT10:30 ET2:30 GMT10:30 北京时间7:30 MST9:30 EST6:30 UAE (+1)22:30 ET23:30 BRT
San Jose 
 
MLB Scoreboard
Interleague
Detroit 4:35 PT5:35 MT6:35 CT7:35 ET19:35 ET23:35 GMT7:35 4:35 MST6:35 EST7:05 VEN3:35 UAE (+1)6:35 CT
Preview
Atlanta 
American League
Baltimore 4:05 PT5:05 MT6:05 CT7:05 ET19:05 ET23:05 GMT7:05 4:05 MST6:05 EST6:35 VEN3:05 UAE (+1)6:05 CT
Preview
NY Yankees 
 
Toronto 4:10 PT5:10 MT6:10 CT7:10 ET19:10 ET23:10 GMT7:10 4:10 MST6:10 EST6:40 VEN3:10 UAE (+1)6:10 CT
Preview
Boston 
 
Tampa Bay 5:05 PT6:05 MT7:05 CT8:05 ET20:05 ET0:05 GMT8:05 5:05 MST7:05 EST7:35 VEN4:05 UAE (+1)7:05 CT
Preview
Texas 
 
Minnesota 5:10 PT6:10 MT7:10 CT8:10 ET20:10 ET0:10 GMT8:10 5:10 MST7:10 EST7:40 VEN4:10 UAE (+1)7:10 CT
Preview
Chi White Sox 
 
Cleveland 5:15 PT6:15 MT7:15 CT8:15 ET20:15 ET0:15 GMT8:15 5:15 MST7:15 EST7:45 VEN4:15 UAE (+1)7:15 CT
Preview
Kansas City 
 
Houston 7:05 PT8:05 MT9:05 CT10:05 ET22:05 ET2:05 GMT10:05 7:05 MST9:05 EST9:35 VEN6:05 UAE (+1)9:05 CT
Preview
LA Angels 
 
Oakland 7:10 PT8:10 MT9:10 CT10:10 ET22:10 ET2:10 GMT10:10 7:10 MST9:10 EST9:40 VEN6:10 UAE (+1)9:10 CT
Preview
Seattle 
National League
Miami 4:05 PT5:05 MT6:05 CT7:05 ET19:05 ET23:05 GMT7:05 4:05 MST6:05 EST6:35 VEN3:05 UAE (+1)6:05 CT
Preview
Washington 
 
NY Mets 4:05 PT5:05 MT6:05 CT7:05 ET19:05 ET23:05 GMT7:05 4:05 MST6:05 EST6:35 VEN3:05 UAE (+1)6:05 CT
Preview
Philadelphia 
 
Chi Cubs 4:10 PT5:10 MT6:10 CT7:10 ET19:10 ET23:10 GMT7:10 4:10 MST6:10 EST6:40 VEN3:10 UAE (+1)6:10 CT
Preview
Cincinnati 
 
Milwaukee 5:10 PT6:10 MT7:10 CT8:10 ET20:10 ET0:10 GMT8:10 5:10 MST7:10 EST7:40 VEN4:10 UAE (+1)7:10 CT
Preview
Colorado 
 
Pittsburgh 5:15 PT6:15 MT7:15 CT8:15 ET20:15 ET0:15 GMT8:15 5:15 MST7:15 EST7:45 VEN4:15 UAE (+1)7:15 CT
Preview
St. Louis 
 
San Diego 6:40 PT7:40 MT8:40 CT9:40 ET21:40 ET1:40 GMT9:40 6:40 MST8:40 EST9:10 VEN5:40 UAE (+1)8:40 CT
Preview
Arizona 
 
LA Dodgers 7:15 PT8:15 MT9:15 CT10:15 ET22:15 ET2:15 GMT10:15 7:15 MST9:15 EST9:45 VEN6:15 UAE (+1)9:15 CT
Preview
San Francisco 
 
Minor League Baseball
International League
El Paso 4:05 PT5:05 MT6:05 CT7:05 ET12:05 GMT
Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 
 
Ryder Cup (PGA)
USA: 0 | Europe: 0
Foursomes - Day 1
MatchScore
Spieth / Reed2 up
Rose / Stensonafter 11
 
Mickelson / Fowler1 up
McIlroy / Sullivanafter 10
 
Johnson / Kuchar4 up
Pieters / Westwoodafter 9
 
Garcia / Kaymer1 up
Walker / Johnsonafter 9
View Full Leaderboard
 
Reignwood LPGA (LPGA)
PosNameScoreThru
1tM. Hur-1418
1tB. Henderson-1418
3S. Feng-1318
4I. Kim-1218
5M. Lee-1018
6A. Yang-918
7M. Leblanc-818
8tC. Choi-718
8tS. Smith-718
10tY. Ji-618
View Full Leaderboard
 
Ryder Cup (EURO)
USA: 0 | Europe: 0
Foursomes - Day 1
MatchScore
Spieth / Reed2 up
Rose / Stensonafter 11
 
Mickelson / Fowler1 up
McIlroy / Sullivanafter 10
 
Johnson / Kuchar4 up
Pieters / Westwoodafter 9
 
Garcia / Kaymer1 up
Walker / Johnsonafter 9
View Full Leaderboard
 
Pacific Links (CHMP)
PosNameScoreThru
1C. Montgomerie - z-15F
2S. McCarron - y-15F
3tM. Jimenez-13F
3tJ. Sluman-13F
3tS. Dunlap-13F
3tD. Garwood-13F
7tB. Langer-12F
7tM. Dawson-12F
7tO. Browne-12F
10tF. Funk-11F
View Full Leaderboard
z = Won in Playoff   y = Lost in Playoff
 
ATP Scoreboard
Friday, Sep. 30
Chengdu Open (ATP)
Quarterfinals
(4) F. Lopez3 4    
K. Khachanov6 6    
(6) V. Troicki6 77    
K. Anderson3 64    
(3) G. Dimitrov4 6 6   
D. Schwartzma6 4 3   
(1) D. Thiem1 4    
(5) A. Ramos-Vino6 6    
 
Shenzhen Open (ATP)
Quarterfinals
(3) R. Gasquet77 77    
M. Zverev64 62    
J. Tipsarevic78 6    
M. Jaziri66 2    
(4) B. Tomic2 2    
T. Bellucci6 6    
(1) T. Berdych77 3 6   
(8) J. Vesely61 6 2   
 
WTA Scoreboard
Friday, Sep. 30
Wuhan Tennis Open (WTA)
Semifinals
(9) S. Kuznetsova6 3 4   
(10) D. Cibulkova3 6 6   
(4) S. Halep1 2    
(14) P. Kvitova6 6    
 
Tashkent Open (WTA)
Semifinals
K. Kozlova62 0    
K. Pliskova77 6    
(4) N. Hibino6 6    
(9) D. Allertova2 3