Not OK with Donald Trump and the flurry of extreme change he is bringing to the world right now? Want to watch the Patriots in the Super Bowl without feeling guilty about enjoying it, considering how cozy the team is with the POTUS? One comic and activist has a solution for you: donate.
Josh Gondelman, a Boston comedian who writes for Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, has said he plans to donate $100 for every touchdown the Patriots score on Sunday and $50 for every field goal, to the NAACP Legal Defense Fund.
— Josh Gondelman (@joshgondelman) February 3, 2017
He’s encouraged his followers to do the same for a cause of their choosing, and the hashtag he’s using, #AGoodGame, has gained some traction since he first started using it last night.
People who he’s retweeted so far have pledged to give money to causes like the Southern Poverty Law Center, Planned Parenthood, the International Rescue Committee, and a number of other national and local organizations.
— e. schenck (@inthemilk) February 3, 2017
Reached by email, Gondelman says he is a “lifelong Patriots fan,” and pointed me to an essay he wrote for Buzzfeed about how he fell in love with the team again when his grandmother got sick (when she was laid to rest, she was wearing a Tom Brady jersey). But he says he was motivated to start his campaign after “some pretty serious philosophical disagreements” kept gnawing at him. “I’d like to cheer for the team I grew up loving without feeling like I’m cheerleading the Trump administration too,” he says.
He gives credit to a friend, Emma Sandoe, for coming up with the idea. And he’s thrilled so many people are following his lead.
“It’s heartening that some other folks have jumped on board,” Gondelman says. “I’d like to think that even if this is partially a craven attempt to assuage my own guilt and complicity, I can do more good than harm by rallying people to do a little nice thing.”
He also notes, by the way, that calling Tom Brady’s politics “garbage” might have been “hyperbolic.”
He clarified: “What I mean, in the cold harsh light of day, is that I wish he would engage more critically with politics given his well-documented terrible choice in red hats.”
Look, at this point you’ve either made your peace with the Patriots’ undeniable ties to Donald Trump, or you haven’t.
It’s not even that the Patriots’ owner, coach, and star merely like or support the guy. They hang out with him, celebrate with him at his inauguration, sing his praises in public at pivotal political moments, and, allegedly, hug and kiss him because they love him so much. Then when you have the nerve ask them about it, they’re so coy.
This has been going on for a long time. Ever since a certain red trucker hat was spotted in a certain athlete’s locker, yada yada. And maybe you’re like the many Pats fans who think this whole Patriots/Trump thing is a whopper of a nothingburger (who cares if the sports billionaire is friendly with the hotel billionaire, one might ask).
But for lots of fans in a liberal corner of the country who are disgusted, frightened, or enraged at the prospect of a man like him in the White House, it’s kind of a problem (as by now every media outlet on the face of the Earth even remotely concerned with American sports and/or politics has reported).
If you can put all of that behind you and just let sports be sports, good for you. If you can’t, then consider this a way to help you sleep at night, and help win some court battles while you’re at it.
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