(Pat)ronizing

ESPN's Don Barone writes about the NFL's new policy to physically pat down every patron that attends a game before entering the stadium. An excerpt:

Kickoff. Bills winning. Losman turns out not to be the kid in front of me with the backpack, and plays well. People in my section describe him as "Kelly-esque." Anointment.

Still, with visions of the mass pat-down in my head, and worrying about the memory etched into 16-year-old minds, I lean over and shout: "So guys, you OK with the pat-down?"

Not taking their eyes off the game, they shake their heads, thinking something like, "Stupid dad, please, dear God, don't let him talk about Thomas Jefferson again — not here."

"Yeah, it was no big deal …"

Cheers. Bills up by three more.

"… no one touched my balls."

And there you have the late modern sportocratic condition in a nutshell: complicit in normalizing behaviours that erode personal and political freedoms, while buttressing a hegemonic heterosexuality in the process.

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