Humanity and Cleveland sports
Posted by disappointmentzone on 15 May 2007
Cleveland sports teams don’t often inspire hope for on-field activities, but sometimes what happens off the field transcends the games and we can find players inspiring a different kind of hope. Take, for instance, the Cavaliers and the Indians.
12 Cavaliers have signed a petition expressing outrage over the genocide in Darfur and Ben recently linked to a nice PD piece about Ira Newble’s admirable involvement in brining attention to what is without a doubt the most pressing humanitarian crisis of the last fifty years. I try to refrain from politics on this blog but there is no political argument for genocide. The issue is as one sided as a game of one-on-one between me and LeBron (who, by the way, is painfully and regretfully following the path of MJ and staying out of all things that could prevent him from selling more shoes). Darfur not a political issue — it’s a humanitarian issue. It is nice to see those with power (NBA basketball players) use it for non-selfish purposes. If only we could expect the same from our representatives in office (oops! politics!).
In other news, SI.com brought my attention to Prepara, the adult education program the Indians organization operates for its Domincan players. This was the first I had heard of the program. From the article:
In the spring of 2004, the Cleveland Indians started requiring their Dominican prospects to attend Prepara, an adult education program that teaches players core subjects such as math, geography, and history. Depending on the time of the year and the intensity of the playing schedule, players become students anywhere from three to five times per week with classes lasting 2 1/2 to 3 1/2 hours, with at least a half-dozen completing their high school educations.
It is the first and only program of its kind and its popularity and impact is increasing. Angel Franco, the first player to graduate from the program, is no longer in baseball — an ill fate for many young Latino players but not for Franco. Thanks to Prepara, he is now in law school.
Some things are better than beating the Nets.
UPDATE: Brylon Edwards is getting into the act as well, pledging $1 million in college scholarships for Cleveland students.