This is Fourth of July weekend, and it is a different experience than any of us have ever had. I’m not just talking about the pandemic, either, as we have also seen social upheavals both domestic and international rock our neighborhoods and headlines.
Perhaps it is appropriate, then, that we celebrate our nation’s independence just days after players reported to Summer Camp, and go through their workouts to get ready for a baseball season that may not go to completion, if it gets started at all.
Perhaps the season shouldn’t start, but since MLB is bent on making money (as former Cub Jeff Samardzija so bluntly states), we wish the players all good health and safe passage through whatever they can get through. And if there is a trophy to be had, I hope David Ross can help the Cubs claim it in his rookie manager season.
The good news thus far is that a relatively low number of players have tested positive.
So we now have a baseline for the start of training. As we are all aware now (for those of us paying attention anyway), it takes up to two weeks for symptoms to manifest, and carriers of the coronavirus don’t always exhibit symptoms, so let’s see what happens in a couple weeks.
This being a weekend to celebrate freedom, let us be good neighbors and consider that players (and outside MLB, many employees in all fields, both considered essential and otherwise) have the freedom to decide what is best for them and their families. Let us at least try to educate ourselves about the topics at hand, from the ongoing battle between the owners and the players union to the global call for equality. Understand that everyone, including athletes, have their freedom of speech to express their opinions and use their platforms to raise awareness for justice.
And even after this weekend, live with the mantra of loving your neighbor and being a good person. It is easy and rewarding to be a friend to all and a champion for progress. With this comes empathy for your fellow human, so use your voice to help others and make your actions count to keep each other safe as we weather the storm.
Happy Independence Day, and here’s hoping for a great (albeit truncated) MLB season and a better tomorrow for all.