Reading “It’s time to change sports culture” (March 30, Sports, page 38) by Drew Wolfson Bell, I was bothered to see such a negative take on sports culture, especially here at McGill. This piece was a ‘hot take’ on an issue that is simply too complex and that cannot be pigeonholed by blaming sports culture.
While domestic abuse seems to be rampant in professional sports, it is too easy to place blame on the culture. Most of the time, these incidents should be seen as isolated – independent from the field and the locker room. Point to upbringing or lack of guidance in that person’s life, but not to sports culture. To discriminate against athletes due to the actions of a small few is unfair.
For example, Wolfson Bell took issue with McGill not forcing all varsity athletes to go through consent training. No matter how you spin it, that’s discrimination, and punishment for men and women who are exemplary members of society.
But that is not the point I wish to make. Too often articles like this focus on the negative and miss the positives. Sports teach discipline, respect, and fraternity, just to name a few qualities.
Varsity athletes encounter different challenges than other students do. Whether it be arriving to practice half an hour early (even if it is at 6 a.m.) or finding a way to balance school, nutrition, sleep, and sport, athletes are pushed to their physical and mental limits daily.
Athletes know that they are to be held to a high standard when they have the privilege of representing their school or city. When our world is riddled with disaster and negativity, there is no better time to look to sports for role models.
—Noah Daoust, U0 Arts