Mike Ditka

Why I’m rooting against the Patriots this Sunday: Their loathsome politics

Why I’m rooting against the Patriots this Sunday: Their loathsome politics

Before the political ascension of Nelson Mandela, black South Africans associated rugby with apartheid. The Springbok’s team and stadium were segregated zones; the squad’s fans embraced defiant nationalism. But when Mandela put on the Springbok’s team jersey at the stadium during the 1995 rugby World Cup, he was not “normalizing” apartheid, as some charged. He was attempting to heal a divided nation. To suggest, as is commonly done in the United States, that sports and politics should not mix, was regarded by Mandela as naive.

Sports and politics do mix. That’s just a fact of life.

Closer to home: This Sunday, the New England Patriots will face the Atlanta Falcons in...

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