In this world of instant surveys and data analysis…. does everything we do define who we are? I mean, does the type of salad dressing I prefer mean I’m pro life or pro choice? If I like mayonnaise more than mustard on my sandwich, does that make me pro gun or not? If I prefer Xbox over Playstation, does that mean I believe in climate change or not? Who knows. Apparently the data does.
On NBC’s Meet the Press, Chuck Todd (Shoutout to another Miami alum) did a short segment on what your favorite sport says about you Politically. Do you like Hockey? Then the data says that you are an Independent voter….. which makes sense because you’re probably Canadian and just here for to escape Tim Hortons. Die hard Basketball fan? Then most likely you lean to the left and vote Democrat. Then again that could also be the fact that your lazy left leaning ass hates practice and just wants to play the game. Love NASCAR? Then you mostly likely vote Republican. Which doesn’t make sense because that sport focuses 99% of it’s action turning left…… but go figure.
Now, before you get your undies in a bunch, if you voted for Hillary or Bernie does that mean you have to stop watching NASCAR….. HELL NO!?! If you are pro life, can you no longer cheer for Lebron James? Don’t be stupid. However let’s also be honest. Each sport has a demographic that it tends to attract for a variety of natural reasons. Let’s look at a couple.
First let’s look at NASCAR. Born in the south from the legends of bootleggers and moon shine runners. A sport that for decades embraced it’s “Southern” roots. It was quite common to see the Confederate Battle Flag flown inside and outside race tracks. As the sport grew and expanded west to Texas, Phoenix, Las Vegas, and California, it also realized it needed to shed that image if it wanted to grow. It has fully gone after a diversified audience. NASCAR has actively recruited former college athletes to become part of racing teams. Xfinity series driver Bubba Wallace Jr. is doing well in the Monster Energy Series 2nd tier division. They also have a D4D (Drive for Diversity) program. Now…. does all this mean you don’t go to a NASCAR Race and see your MAGA gear? Of course not, but you might also see my wife and I, (And she is the much bigger racing fan than I am)
Now let’s look at the opposite end. According to the survey, NFL Fans were some of the most “Liberal” fans and voters. Well, let’s look at it. Very popular sport across all socioeconomic lines. Disproportionately seen as a “way out”. Many see football as a poor man’s “rite of passage”. While College football has been big in the south for decades, the NFL has only recently expanded into Tampa, Jacksonville, Atlanta, and Charlotte. That didn’t stop Tom Brady, California native and rags to riches Tom Brady, from rocking his MAGA hat and then dancing around questions about it with all of the grace that comes from knowing the White Privilege 2 step.
The short summary is this. Stop being ignorant in thinking that ONLY certain folks do certain things. Do you boo. Get out and do new things. Meet new people. Have new experiences. Sports have an incredible ability to bring large groups of people together to share in a common goal. Maybe it would be nice if we brought that to our politics.