In defence of David Booth, who really shouldn’t need defending

One unfortunate aspect of professional athletes using Twitter is that it leads, invariably, to a greater insight into what they think.

Of course, this isn’t the end of the world if their views happen to line up with yours. But if they don’t, for many, that’s a problem.

I’ve never been quite sure as to why; an athlete’s worldview has no bearing on whether they can succeed at their sport. Unless the athlete is espousing a racist, violent, or homophobic (i.e. harmful) ideology, I don’t really see that what they believe is anybody’s business. But for some, it’s not enough for the athlete to do sports well — he or she also has see the world the right way (i.e. their way).

I think it’s a foolish approach to sports fandom that only increases the avenues through which a member of your favourite team can disappoint you.

Since descending on Twitter, David Booth has disappointed many. His right-wing views have offended the sensibilities of Vancouver’s left-leaning populace, and in the midst of this lockout, where he can’t possibly score the goals necessary to mitigate the importance of who he is off the ice (let’s call this “the Todd Bertuzzi effect”), public opinion of the Canuck winger only drops.

But it really isn’t fair. Sure, Booth’s opinions don’t reflect the consensus in Metro Vancouver, but the flak he gets over voicing them is completely unreasonable.

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