Political Discussion

Blast away, folks. Be nice.

50 thoughts on “Political Discussion”

  1. I can’t care if you’re vaxxed or not. I happen to be vaxxed because I think the vaccine works and there’s minimal downside. I love the jab, and might even get a third jab. I could see myself getting jabbed every year like the flu shot. But I also feel like Jorge Soler should not have to be vaccinated. I agree with everyone who would like more information, a longer track record, aren’t concerned about the effects of Covid, etc. Lots of great reasons for a 30-year old elite athlete to not get the jab.

    But why did we all get the jab, and why do they talk about the jab on the television every day if it matters whether the guy next to you — Soler, in this case — isn’t vaccinated. Isn’t that the whole point of the jab? So it significantly reduces the likelihood you would get Covid, and if you did, your symptoms would be significantly less severe?

    That’s how it was sold to me. Doesn’t seem to be playing out in practicality when Soler has to go home because he got Covid.

  2. I think the point you’re missing is that Soler being around the other players after he has tested positive puts others at risk. The last thing we need is for people on the team to get sick like Freddie did last year and miss the rest of the playoffs.

  3. What tangible risk does he put them under?

    Maybe the vaccine doesn’t work. Maybe you could be positive and give me Covid and give me severe symptoms or even death. Is there a lot of data to suggests that’s anything more than a 0.1% chance?

    Where is all this going? I don’t care if Soler has Covid. That’s the whole point of the vaccine. So does it not work?

  4. We don’t know who has been vaccinated. And since that isn’t mandated, then they will have to quarantine to protect those who aren’t vaccinated.

    And also, as I think Cindy mentioned in the other thread, there are coaches on the team who are older and with possible health problems (Eric Young opted out last year saying he was immunocompromised). For someone who is older and with health problems, there is a nonzero chance that there is a breakthrough COVID case that is fatal. (As we saw last week with Colin Powell).

    They aren’t going to risk someone’s health by letting someone who had tested positive for COVID near them.

  5. https://www.healthline.com/health-news/what-is-your-actual-risk-of-getting-covid-19-if-youre-vaccinated

    According to 176 million people vaccinated. 8,900 have been hospitalized.

    From the article:

    “This means the risk of being hospitalized for COVID-19 after vaccination is 0.00005 percent.”

    So, why can’t we have Soler’s bat in the lineup because of Eric Young? Eric Young actually has a better chance of DYING in a car crash (1 in 5,000) than being hospitalized if vaccinated. Should we make accommodations for that?

    I’m sorry, but statistically speaking, it was pretty silly to not allow Soler to play baseball when the numbers are so heavily on the side of the vaccine actually working.

  6. These guys are around several hundred people a day. The viral load is much less when fully vaxxed but the delta variant gives a 1:6 transmission rate for unvaccinated people. That means of every 1 person that is infected with delta will transmit it to 6 people. As we saw last night, there were thousands of people on the field (assuming they were family of players) and many were in close contact with others whether they wanted to be or not.

    But that’s only part of it. Are you going to allow a catcher to play with COVID and stand by a 60 year old umpire who may or may not be in great shape? What about managers or players that get in umpire’s faces? I don’t think you’re looking at all the variables if you’re essentially saying, “He’s healthy. Why can’t he play?” It short-sighted and, tbh, pretty inhumane. Baseball is a game and we shouldn’t be putting people’s lives at risk for a game.

  7. Yes, but that 0.00005% number is taking all of those types of people into consideration: the immunocompromised, the elderly, the obese, etc. Even a modicum of trenching of the vulnerable would cause that number to plummet even further. And comparing risks is important in this context; statistically speaking, Eric Young is being more reckless driving in Atlanta traffic to the stadium than he is coming into contact with someone Covid positive if he’s vaccinated. The level of risk here is incredibly small, much smaller than some daily activities.

    This would have been a great opportunity to celebrate the success of the vaccine by saying that because almost every one else did the right thing and got vaccinated, the team didn’t have to suffer because Soler didn’t want to be vaccinated. And yet the team suffered because of a statistical likelihood less than dying in a car crash. It’s counter-factual and unscientific.

    And once again, when does this end? When will we accept that the vaccine works and return to our normal lives? When will we accept the reality that there will be a percentage of people — maybe even a big one — that will never be vaccinated and we need to carry on? Soler is a small example of an unscientific response to a problem that continues on 20 months later.

  8. You’re sounding like you’re assuming that everyone is vaccinated, which we all know they are not.

  9. @8 Once again, that points to logic that this will never end because we are unlikely to get to a vaccination rate that is significantly higher than what it is now.

    But regardless, your response to Soler getting Covid is to hurt the team vs. just sending the first base coach home. What’s best for the team?

  10. It’s probably not going to end, as long as there is a significant portion of the population that won’t get vaccinated. This is the new normal, and it sucks.

  11. @11 Unfortunately, that’s not true. 44% of Americans are aged 35 or younger. So even if every single adult aged 35 or older got vaxxed, you’re topped out at 56%. We’re at 66%, so well above any reasonable expectation of participation by the groups most affected by Covid. At this point, they’re just trying to pad their stats by getting the age groups least effected by Covid vaccinated so they can present a shiny number to the population. We’re not going to get to 100%. We may not even get to 75%. And we don’t need to.

    Don’t get me wrong, there are some troubling rates within other breakdowns: only 77% of Americans aged 75 or older are vaxxed, only 81% of Americans aged 65 through 74 are fully vaxxed, and states with high obesity rates (like Alabama) have abysmal overall vaccination (44% in this case). It boggles my mind that almost 1/4 people aged 75 or older don’t want to be vaccinated.

    But that doesn’t mean we need to still live in ridiculous protocols like keeping one of our best hitters out of the lineup during the most important time of the year. Even before we had the vaccine, have there been more than a couple MLB employees hospitalized due to Covid? Any? It doesn’t mean we need to have mask mandates in certain parts of the country. It doesn’t mean we need to have eviction moratoriums (a certain group took that to the Supreme Court just two months ago), vaccine mandates, unfilled jobs which are partly contributed to Covid, and disruptions in our supply chains which are blamed on Covid. I had to present my vaxx card at every store I went into in Paris a couple weeks ago. Absolutely ridiculous.

    At this point, this is all completely counter-factual and unscientific.

  12. The spread isn’t unscientific. Quarantining a player reduces the spread of the virus. It’s literally what every human being should do, no matter their profession. To allow a baseball player to play being COVID positive would send a ripple across the sport, and rightfully so. No one is above this virus and that would be the message sent. COVID is its own pyramid scheme and to suggest that a player be able to play, all the while, be around teammates/coaches/trainers/umpires/fans is an absurd ask in the grand scheme of what the world is trying to accomplish. If Soler infected 2-3 people, those people would infect anywhere between 1-6 people before they even knew they had COVID. I don’t understand why this is so hard to comprehend. At one point in time, you called my doctor friend a doomsdayer because he said this virus will kill more than 100K in our country. We are now at 3/4 of a million and you want to allow a COVID positive player to play baseball with a chance to infect many more? I don’t get it, Rob.

  13. No one is above this virus

    Statistically and scientifically speaking, vaccinated people are above this virus. That’s why we got vaccinated. The data is overwhelming that you will not be hospitalized if you’re vaccinated. It’s important to repeat that you have more of a chance of DYING on an ANNUAL basis in a car accident than you are getting HOSPITALIZED if you’re vaccinated. Please stop to consider the math on that. This is why we were taught prob and stats in college, so we can interpret data to put into our every day life.

    It is way past time to be treating exposure to this virus if vaccinated the way we did 18, 12, even 6 months ago. The data is just simply not on the side that think that we’re still in a pandemic. If you’re vaccinated, you’re simply not.

  14. To the shock of no one, I am not nearly as religious as I was 15 years ago. But one thing that I carry with me is the fact that taking the Lord’s name in vain is extremely offensive. And unlike the majority of the micro aggressions that occur in our culture, to hear your higher power being disrespected and not doing anything about it carries with it some extra weight. If I say nothing when someone is taking God’s name in vain, I have done something very wrong, in theory.

    I say all that to say that, just like someone saying GD, the tomahawk chop is not intended to be offensive. And intent has to matter. If it would be inappropriate for me to go scorched earth on every single person who says GD, it’s pretty inappropriate for this debate to continue to rage. Do you have a very small portion of a very diverse culture that takes offense with something that happens. This is no different than the millions of Christians who find taking the Lord’s name to be offensive. And neither are going to stop, so why is one debate constantly raging?

  15. The chop is like fucking your goddamn cousin. You can tell people it’s a bad idea but the average Braves fan is going to do it anyway.

  16. and @ 16 immediately knowingly and purposefully seeks to offend, and seemingly condemn those whom he believes are offending, despite strong evidence that those don’t mean to offend. Rob’s point proven.

  17. I agree about the use of the word, GD. That word makes me cringe. I’m not sure how it relates to the chop though.

    I want to start by saying that deep down I love the chop. I’ve loved it since Deion Sanders was a Brave. However, not ALL Americans see it that way. Most Native Americans outside of Atlanta find it to be very offensive. They want it to be stopped along with the caricature of the tomahawk on the jerseys. It isn’t up to us to decide what is or isn’t offensive to another culture. How would Christians feel about a sports jersey with a caricature of Jesus on the front?

    I think Atlanta should work with all Native American groups, not just those in Atlanta. From what I’ve read it’s possible they could come to an agreement to keep the name Braves if they honor Native American culture, rather than use things like that stupid chant that is causing way too much trouble.

    Everyone has noticed that the Braves are losing almost every close call in the World Series. They lost a transfer call at 2B that should have easily been overturned. They are even tying Dusty Baker to Henry Aaron more than his former team. Is this a coincidence or does mlb/the umpires prefer a cheating franchise to win over one who 3/4 of the country considers to support racism? I think it’s obvious.

    Let’s just get rid of the chop and come up with something even more annoying. How about a hammer pound?

  18. @16 Atlanta needs to get some of those annoyingly loud LA speakers. Every time the chop starts, start playing something over it.

  19. When will people drill it through their thick skulls that you can’t just snap your finger and get rid of The Chop? It’s not like a logo or team name, it’s something entirely out of the team’s control. Yes, they can say they don’t encourage its usage, they can try to come up with a replacement all day long, but ultimately as long as the paying fans at Truist Park like it and continue to do it, there’s nothing anyone anywhere can realistically do about that, and crying to Manfred to “make them stop” sounds so juvenile it’s beyond belief. They’re not going to stop a game and eject a five-digit number of people from the stadium, get real.

    @18: “one who 3/4 of the country considers to support racism

    Be honest, you made that number. I doubt 75% of the country even knows what The Chop is, much less that high dislikes it. You spend too much time on Twitter.

  20. The more the Plaschke’s and Twitter warriors whine about the Chop, the more you’ll hear it at Truist — that’s human nature. It’s also a data point that says that maybe most Americans don’t see the Chop as peak racism the way certain corners of Twitter do. If someone devised a chant that incorporated the “n-word”, I doubt tens of thousands of fans would participate night after night.

    What’s funny to me is that the Chop was always kind of an early-90s thing that was dying out by the 2000s. People were just sort of over it, and it was really the organization’s marketing team that kept it alive (with hashtags, and those big drums in the outfield concourse, and the music, etc.). Even in 2012-13, when the on-field product was exciting and playoff-bound, the Chop was more of a zombie shuffle than anything else. Then, the Cardinals reliever decided to play his PSYOPS card in the playoffs, SJWs latched on as a boutique issue, and here we are. The Chop is as raucous as ever.

  21. @20 “you can’t just snap your finger and get rid of The Chop”

    Hence, why I said that they need to start playing super loud music over the top of it every single time it starts. Yes, I made up the 3/4 number. It is probably larger than that. The only people who love the chop are southern Braves fans. Those of us who grew up outside of the Atlanta area have no attachment to it.

    @23 The chop is very racist according to Native Americans.

    So, if you all are given a choice between losing ALL close calls in playoff games and keeping your precious chop which do you choose? I choose ditching the stupid chop. This country is different than it was 25 years ago. This team is being punished right now. They not only need to beat the better team in the Astros, they need to beat MLB, who seemingly want the Braves to lose.

  22. @24. Well…except for Seminoles fans in Florida, or Chiefs fans in the Midwest, or (news to me) Chiefs fans in Exeter, England. It’s not just a “Braves thing” or a “Southeast thing”. That, along with your self-admitted fictitious stats, which now you’re doubling down on, are the kind of broad brush racism painting that creates defiance. The whole strategy is self-defeating. And if your evidence can be made up, then I’ll feel free to offer anecdotal evidence: I grew up in New Jersey, in a family of outspoken Democrats who march for BLM and hate Donald Trump, etc. (you get the point), as the only Braves fan in a sea of Phillies fans. They hate everything about the Braves, but they think the Chop is pretty cool and wish the Phillies had something like that to energize the stadium. Racism or counter-racism isn’t even part of the discussion. Maybe they’re part of your proclaimed ultra-minority of anachronistic bigots who think the Chop is ok.

    Re: close calls. If you think umpires are, in the moment, calling balls and strikes based on the Chop, you’re either certifiable, or you need to put the tinfoil away.

    Re: loud music over the Chop. I’m glad you don’t run the marketing department. It’s always been a struggle to fill the seats in Atlanta. The team is not about to declare war on its own fans.

  23. @20, the team is encouraging its usage, though. The scoreboards have visuals of tomahawks chopping in rhythm, or at least they did at the NLDS game I attended.

    Also, the perpetually offended may think there is something MLB can do even if it’s only the fans chopping without any team encouragement. Mexican (and I think Central American) soccer fans have a long tradition of chanting a homophobic slur when the opposing goalie has a goal kick. I think it’s in poor taste and would prefer that they not do it, but I’m not offended to the point of demanding that they stop. International soccer authorities have cracked down on it to the extent of interrupting matches when it happens and making Mexico’s national team play matches with no fans allowed.

    I have mixed feelings about the chop and the team name. The choppers certainly intend it to be positive, and the kind of people who are most vocally against it on Twitter are not the kind of people that I want setting our cultural standards. On the other hand, in a Talking Chop thread that got diverted onto the subject several months ago, posters who had spoken with members of various tribes noted that some had said they were upset and/or saddened. If I were the team, rather than wasting time and energy and focus doing outreach with tribes and dealing with the people who are upset, I think the more practical path would be to just change the team name.

    @23, I think one of the reasons the Chop first drew national attention was that in 1991, when it really was an organic thing and a bigger deal than it is now, the Braves played the Twins in the World Series, and the American Indian Movement (which very definitely does not like the team name or the Chop) was headquartered in Minneapolis. If the Braves’ opponent had been another team, I doubt it would have been as big a deal, at least then.

  24. I agree about the use of the word, GD. That word makes me cringe. I’m not sure how it relates to the chop though.

    A small percentage of humans are extremely offended by GD. A small percentage of humans are extremely offended by the Chop. One conversation rages uncontrollably; one doesn’t even exist.

    The Chop isn’t going anywhere, nor should it. This is a Twitter creation. You can find one member of any portion of the intersectional coalition to tell you SOMETHING is offensive. The cows left the barn on that.

  25. Chop is cringy to me. You may not agree, but consider this: It’s gonna stop one day. Maybe 2022, maybe 2032, maybe 2042.

    These things build momentum and don’t reverse.
    Thought they’d never change the Redskins or Indians names? Then they did.
    Thought they’d never take down craploads of confederate statues? Then they did.
    Think the chip will stay forever? Think again.

    So why wait? Why draw this out and have to explain to your kids or grandkids why it took so long to stop it? It’s inevitable and each day they delay in stopping it just makes it worse.

  26. The Chop is in the hands of regular people, not ownership nor Democratic-controlled city councils. The other things would still be in place if left up to normal people.

  27. @30, I imagine that Democratic-controlled city councils think that they and their voters are normal/regular people too.

  28. @25 I thought we were supposed to “be nice”. Calling someone “certifiable” because they have different beliefs certainly does not qualify. You are a “nasty” person.

    @27 The Chop IS going away. Y’all can stick your head in the head in the sand all you want about that all you want. We will be extremely lucky if we keep the Braves moniker. I have doubts about that.

    @29 My point exactly. Just rip the band-aid off and get rid of it. I am sick of everyone whining about it.

    @30 Absolutely nothing to do with Democrats. Ohio is a GOP controlled state and they got rid of the Indians name.

    For whoever mentioned the Chiefs. They have been criticized too. The Seminoles have some arrangement with Seminole nation.

  29. As we’re being sensitive to offensive words, does anyone have any thoughts?

  30. It’s pretty simple, stop encouraging the chop (which is kind of tired and not at all original) and come up with some other way to fire up the crowd. If the chop happens organically, that’s fine, but my guess is that it would eventually die out on its own if the team came up with a suitable substitute.

    As for the team name, personally I’m not really attached to it and it wouldn’t bother me in the slightest if it was changed. I’m a fan of the sport and the team, not the iconography. At the end of the day, it’s going to be a business decision and not a moral decision.

  31. @33. Exactly, this is an endless slippery slope if we want it to be. There will always be someone around that doesn’t like something and wants it changed, or just wants the attention associated with the effort. People are waking up to this, and it’s why I don’t agree with the “change is inevitable crowd.” I think the line may end up getting drawn somewhere after Indians, but before Braves.

    Cindy, I apologize for calling you “certifiable.” I realized after I wrote it that I shouldn’t have, and didn’t have a chance to edit. But, again, I really strongly disagree that umpires are calling borderline strikes because of the Chop. That whole argument seems a bit hysterical.

    Go Braves tonight!

  32. The chant and chop at Truist right now has to be triggering Rosenthal, Passan, and all the other activists who work for The Athletic and ESPN.

    P.S. I don’t care for either, but I also don’t care for journalists calling the Braves and all their fans racists.

  33. So why don’t we want to rename the “bullpen” to “arm barn”? I mean, is this not the same situation? A collection of people are offended by something. Why wouldn’t we rename “bullpen”?

  34. I like to imagine for each seething sports columnist article railing against The Chop, the fans at Truist respond by making it one dB louder.

  35. Had the Fox pregame show on TV with the volume down, and it looked like David Ortiz did the Chop to energize fans behind them. Wonder how members of the national media, many of whom seem to revere Ortiz, will react.

  36. @40. They’ll ignore it because it doesn’t fit the ‘cool kid’ narrative. That’s pretty cool though.

  37. If people keep wanting to sensationalize social justice and Covid (good gosh, can we move on from Covid already?), you’re going to find a re-emergence of Trump. And while I am no Democrat, I have very much been enjoying this post-Trump era.

    But people just can’t help themselves. Race, race, race. Covid fear porn. This is quite literally how we ended up with Trump the first time. I was at a Jason Aldean concert last night, and between “let’s go Brandon” chants every 2 seconds and mocking the Covid crazies, it’s pretty clear there’s another tea party forming.

  38. Not going to lie, that CNN article is completely ridiculous. I can’t believe how many words they wrote over a ‘drama’ that exists in very, very few regular peoples’ heads.

  39. @38,

    I am pretty sure that “bullpen” comes from a Bull Durham tobacco sign over a pitcher warm up area in an old Major League Park (like Crosley, Forbes field, somewhere?). Why would somebody name a place where your pitchers warm up after “slaughter.” Maybe THE OTHER TEAM’S place, but not your own team’s place.

    PETA’s positions would have precluded the survival of genus Homo. Thus their existence is speciesist against their own species.

  40. PETA isn’t being serious here. They’re huge trolls on Twitter and people fall for it every time.

    Ask around the country and you’ll see… people think the chop is racist. Head of the Choctaw nation, and a friend of mine, thinks it’s a mockery of his people and therefore racist. It might be 10% that watch, but they’re going to come out every year the Braves are in the spotlight. Whether we like it or not, this isn’t going away anytime soon just because the Braves made good with some org they’re supporting financially.

    Does it offend me? No. I’m not Native American. But, I don’t do it anymore. As a school teacher of young kids, I felt it was important to not take part in the chop.

    Cancel culture is definitely real, I don’t have the answers, but there’s not going to be common ground anytime soon. Not here at this blog. Not here in our nation. I beg of you in this chat to please not let this bleed over to the other side.

  41. I think it’s doing a good job of staying over here.

    Who decides if something is racist? If a bunch of Native Americans say something is racist and a bunch of Native Americans say it’s not, who wins out?

    If a bunch of Christians say “G-D” is reprehensible, and a bunch of Christians say “G-D” is not reprehensible, who wins out?

    Some African Americans inexplicably do not think the “n-word” is racist and put it all over movies and music and in normal speech. How does that work?

    Who decides this?

  42. If you are interested in getting some context on what is happening in the Ukraine today, I highly recommend you watch Winter on Fire, a Netflix documentary that is also available for free on YouTube. After seeing the courage and resolve of ordinary Ukrainians to escape Putin’s orbit in the winter of 2013/2014, there is no way to believe that Putin every really thought he would waltz in and take over the entire country today. I think the plan all along has likely been to seize control of the disputed regions in the east and the coastal corridor to Crimea, and then reduce the rest of the country to rubble as payback for those events.

    My company has contract workers in Ukraine (software industry). Most of them have gotten out to Poland, but a few remain in areas where we can’t get them evacuated, or they have chosen to stay. What a disaster.

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