For the better part of the last century or more there has been something of an unspoken compact between the sphere of politics and the sphere of sports; they have basically stayed out of one another’s way.
This compact—already deteriorating—has been shattered as President Donald Trump went head to head with players in the NBA and NFL about questions of patriotism.
Regrettably, we should expect this story to expand over time because this does represent, I would argue, a major turning point in the culture. When you have sports and politics now colliding in such an explosive way it’s going to be very difficult to disentangle them.
This story provides further evidence of a very lamentable development in American culture, and that is the intrusion of politics into virtually everything, into every arena of life.
That’s not healthy, it’s not healthy for any society. It is certainly not healthy for the United States of America in 2017.
Wherever we go from here it is previously uncharted territory for the presidency, patriotism, and professional sports.