Wednesday, February 16, 2022

When Feelings Trump Everything Else

Russian skater Kamila Valieva performed in the short program last night, with the Sword of Positives dangling over her 15 year old head. She did well, but there was a pall over the whole proceeding

Commentators were left pretty much speechless, save for saying this skate should not even be happening. 

I could go through the cold hard logic about due process and other lawyerly things that I know little about - except that they're very important in a free society - but that kind of butchers the point. 

This whole thing feels icky. And sometimes a feeling trumps everything else. 

When Baffert - who deserves and is receiving due process - ran horses in New York after a hearing, it felt the same way. If he races in next year's Derby, it will as well. Commentators talking about the ill-fated Medina Spirit while talking about another three he has in, well, I don't blame anyone for feeling what they'd feel. 

I believe when a sport is put into this position, it signals a problem at its own core. When rules are guidelines, punishment is ad hoc and written in sand where a breeze or wave can change everything, these sports should expect our feelings would override everything else. 

I have no hope the IOC does things right, and neither do many of you. We both probably feel the same way about this disparate, maddening fiefdom-led sport we follow daily called horse racing. We have little confidence in the power structures. 

Right of center political commentator Ben Shapiro often says "facts don't care about your feelings", and he's probably right. We need to always rely on fact and remove emotion out of the equation. But sometimes the facts suck, and I don't think any of us need to apologize for feeling the way we do. 

Have a nice Wednesday everyone. 

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