A certain presidential candidate likes to talk about building walls, but if you live where I do, Mexico, Mexicans and the Mexican culture is everywhere.
It's more of a blessing than anything.
On this weekend of Mexican independence, I celebrate our freedoms as an American. I celebrate the people who value and understand the diversity of the United States. I celebrate the important influence of Mexico and all of Latin America on our games, our cuisine, our daily life.
Here are some other things I celebrate this weekend:
-Sports teams who understand how to make their product more attractive to Latino fans. I'm watching two at present, the Dodgers and Diamondbacks.
-The right to kneel, sit, raise a fist or in any way silently protest and/or speak out against and racial and gender discrimination in this country. It exists, and critics need to get over it and let people exercise their freedoms.
-The right of fans to threaten to boycott a sports team and its owner for that person's tone-deaf support of the above-mentioned candidate. It's easy to say that politics and sports should not mix and everyone is entitled to an opinion. Fine, but why risk alienating what should be a critical part of your lower-division team's fan base? It's a bad look for a soccer team that is trying to win fan support in a city, Phoenix, that has plenty of other options. In a city where elected officials have outwardly discriminated against Latinos (see SB 1070). That owner has since sold the team. Here's hoping the new owners at least stay neutral.
-Baseball postseason races, early-season pro and college football and Hispanic Heritage Month.
-The Rio Paralympics. Courageous performances on cable TV!
-Roberto Clemente, hero, humanitarian, trendsetter, baseball star.
-A lifetime of sports memories that grows every day.