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posted: 8/3/2014 12:01 AM

Surely, God is neutral in sports

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Surely, God is neutral in sports

The July 26 Daily Herald sports section has a picture of Cubs' Luis Valbuena crossing home plate after hitting a home run against the St. Louis Cardinals, looking skyward, and raising his arms toward the heavens "celebrating" his home run.

Years ago the caption under the picture would have expressly referred to the hitter thanking God for empowering him to hit that homer. But that was not nice because it implied that God favored the hitter, while disfavoring the pitcher on the other team who threw the ball. That made God look a bit arbitrary, favoring one athlete while condemning the other.

So a couple years ago, American journalists started to declare that the home run hitter was "celebrating" his homer, and supposedly that would keep God out of the picture. But I fear not, for it is all too obvious what the baseball player is doing when he reaches his arms up to the heavens after hitting that homer.

Now some years ago professional football authorities ordered that practice to cease when a player crossed the goal line scoring a touchdown. He may clap his hands, jump up and down and hug his fellow teammates, but he may not point to the heavens to thank God.

I would suggest that the commissioner of professional baseball also order that practice to cease when a player crosses home plate after hitting a home run. Let the player take credit for his own talents in hitting that homer, and let's keep God out of the picture inasmuch as God is surely neutral when He observes athletic contests. Amen.

Theodore M. Utchen


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