Listen to Geraldo In Cleveland, weekdays 9-10 am on Newsradio WTAM 1100, also available on 106.9 FM and the free iheartradio app.
New York City's "Canyon of Heroes" is a sacred place. Over this country's history it has been reserved for the best the United States have to offer. The tradition of a ticker tape parade in the city that never sleeps began in October of 1886, when the people of the New York threw an impromptu celebration after the dedication of the Statue Of Liberty. Throughout the twentieth century the city, and the country, have come together to celebrate Amelia Earhart after her transatlantic flight, General Dwight D. Eisenhower and the rest of the American forces that won World War 2, and the Astronauts of Apollo 11 after Neil Armstrong took one small step for man,
Now for the second time, The US Women's World Cup Soccer team joins a list that includes Harry Truman, Charles Lindbergh, and Nelson Mandela when The City of New York came together to celebrate the team's second straight World Cup Championship.
However, unlike parades past, the entire country wasn't behind the honorees. Some high profile members of the team, including captain Megan Rapinoe have been critical of President Trump- especially about his administration's stance on LBGTQ issues.
In a modern world where fried chicken, fireworks, and workout gear have become political, it isn't that surprising that politics have infiltrated it's way onto the athletic field. Social media has given the modern athlete an unprecedented platform. Sometimes they choose that platform to talk about their favorite movies and music, or to trash talk another athlete. Sometimes, they use it to share their political opinions.
In the short time that social media has been around, Americans have proven that they have a tough time forgetting what they read on twitter- especially when it's a political opinion they don't agree with. Sports used to unify the country. Americans gathered around TV's and radios to keep track of Joe DiMaggio's 56 game hitting streak or to celebrate the 1980 United States Hockey Team's victory over the USSR.
However, that isn't the case today.
The internet has given society many things. Information moves around the globe quicker than in any time in history. Communication that used to take months, weeks, or days now takes seconds. It has more of an impact on the world since any invention since Gutenberg's printing press.
However, it's gifts may have come at a price.
Nothing is simple anymore. It seems that the average American has lost a little of their innocence and gained some cynicism. Who knows if things will ever go back to normal, or if this is the new normal. Either way, the days of something being "just a game" seem to be over for the foreseeable future.