Published June 18, 2010
The American right-wing has a love/hate relationship with football, they love to hate it. Every four years there’s a flurry of commentary from US conservatives about how football is a game for socialists, illegal immigrants and your mother is a whore. My favorite recent anti-football essay came last year and had nothing to do with the World Cup, just theologian Stephen H. Webb’s absurd xenophobia and chauvinism, How Soccer is Ruining America. Favorite quote: “As a display of nearly death-defying stamina, soccer mimics the paradigmatic feminine experience of childbirth more than the masculine business of destroying your opponent with insurmountable power.”
In the 1920s football was just about to turn into a major sport in the United States. Slate explains what went wrong. And don’t forget to check out the lovely video at the bottom of the article that makes fun of the often ridiculous norms of American sports television coverage.*
Also from Slate, an informative explanation of why Americans (and Australians and Canadians) use the word soccer.
* Yes, yes, I know that this makes perfect sense for sports with frequent, predictable stops and starts like baseball and American football.
Photo by wjarrettc.