Dear Professional Sports Team Owners, Stop Holding Your Cities Hostage

Dear Professional Sports Team Owners, Stop Holding Your Cities Hostage

Trying to extract a ransom to build an extravagant stadium is to the detriment of your fans. Build your own stadium.


Relocation seems to be part and parcel of the sports world here in America. Many teams over the years have relocated; many of the original NBA franchises relocated, many baseball franchises, as well as hockey franchises. Football has a couple of infamous ones; the Colts and the Ravens, both of whom were essentially stolen overnight. Now, there are many reasons why teams may relocate, some of them justifiable. Fan interest may be low, there may be little incentive to invest in the franchise, etcetera. However, one of the most abhorrent and deplorable reasons for moving a team? Not being able to subsidize a stadium, and forcing the onus onto the cities they reside in. This is wrong for many, many reasons.

For one, cities have other, more pressing reasons to provide money to projects. Other projects will spur economic growth better in the long term and are less risky since the sports franchises are volatile and subject to change depending on team performance. There are more important public services that cities also provide; funding for infrastructure, law enforcement, utilities, and neighborhood-based investments such as community centers and parks. All of this far more important than a sports stadium, especially in cities where no space may be present. This is part of why the city of St. Louis vetoed a proposal to construct a new stadium utilizing sales taxes; the citizens didn't feel that money should be allocated towards it.

Another issue is that the economics surrounding stadiums is shaking at best. Many economists agree that the relative benefits are outweighed by any potential costs. Take football stadiums; these are used for, usually, some preseason games, 8 regular season games, then maybe playoff games, if the team possesses the talent. That does not sound like a phenomenal return on investment. Other stadiums, like basketball and hockey stadiums, may be able to host other events, but this may depend on the market. If you're, say, the Warriors, the Oracle may not be the primary venue, considering that San Francisco is a big (and noteworthy) bridge away. Other cities may be passed over entirely. Now, the owners may see this risk and try to compel the city to pay to erect the stadium... but why would they take the risk on a set of individuals whose main priority is to amass wealth?

Third; most of these owners could gladly afford the construction of a new stadium if need be. Let's take a more recent case as an example; Anthony Precourt. The current owner of the Columbus Crew inserted a provision into his contract that allowed the team to be moved to Austin, and would gladly subsidize the construction of it, even if it was far away from his preferred "downtown Austin." Columbus? Is not afforded that same leniency or privilege. They are required to fund the construction of his vision, even if the stadium they currently have is a measly 4.1 miles from downtown Columbus. The St. Louis project easily could have gone through, since the owners had already put up most of the money. It is pathetic to force a city to turn to their coffers to benefit the pockets of the franchise's owners when those same owners could easily afford to either subsidize the construction of the stadium.

We have seen what happens to cities who do not capitulate, do not acquiesce to the demands of these franchises. Cities that were hamstrung by investments into existing sports stadiums, like Seattle, could only watch as the beloved and adored Supersonics departed for Oklahoma City. The Quebec Nordiques packed up quickly and left for Denver. The Grizzlies and San Jose Earthquakes both left their cities of origin behind, though San Jose was granted a team in the future. Even San Diego, the home of the Chargers essentially since its' inception, bolted for LA. Other cities averted catastrophes; the Kings managed to remain in Sacramento, and AFC Wimbledon was revived soon after their beloved team was moved to Milton Keynes, a move forever derided by soccer fans. Look, I know these are expensive ventures and undertakings.

However, leaving cities to pay the bill via taxes, only for them to be constantly and incessantly threatened, is not a good strategy. Citizens should not have to suffer through needless taxes so a team can go 28-54, while their infrastructure and social programs go unfunded.

Save The Crew. Build YOUR OWN stadium, Precourt.

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Professional Athletes Are Paid Too Much

Are pro-athletes really deserving of the monetary commission they receive?

For generations, children have aspired to become professional athletes. In the 1920's children wanted to be Babe Ruth; in 2012 children wanted to be Derek Jeter. The list of pro-athletes that influence the younger generation can go on and on. Looking back on elementary school yearbooks, the most common profession for youths has (and will continue to be) a professional athlete. Whether it involves the MLB, the NFL, the NHL, or any other professional league, children tend to pick this profession out of love for the specific sport. Yet, these innocent and uninformed children seem to strike gold by choosing one of the most economically successful jobs in the world.

While professional athletes dedicate most of their life to their respected sport, the amount they are paid to simply play games is absurd. For example, the average salary for a professional football player in the NFL is $1.9 million per year. Keep in mind that that is average, without external endorsements. Therefore, some athletes make much more than that. The crowd favorite Peyton Manning averages $19 million a year. Sports other than football also have averages that are incredibly generous. In the world of golf, the popular Tiger Woods makes more than $45 million a year. These pro-athletes make millions of dollars, most of whom have not received an outstanding education. In fact, some have not even received a college diploma.

Zooming out from the glamorous and indulgent world of professional athletics, taking a look at other professions seems to be much less appealing. How is it that jobs that are vital to the success of the public receive much less commission than jobs that revolve around running to catch a ball? The average pediatrician makes $173,000 a year. The average teacher salary is $50,000 a year. This does not mean that a professional athlete is any less of a hard-working, devoted, deserving professional. This also does not mean that the athletes have not pushed themselves and worked incredibly hard throughout the years to get where they are, but it does mean that there is a line where inequity takes over. Fame and fortune are showered upon athletes. Is it truly necessary to average out millions of dollars per year when people spend massive amounts of time researching and developing new policies, cures, or other ways to improve the condition of the world? The salary and status of professional athletes seems to be a major power imbalance in the world of careers.

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From The Girl Who Kept Getting Denied Internships, Keep On Trying

"Do not be embarrassed by your failures, learn from them and start again." - Richard Branson


The idea of applying to graduate school or applying to a job in your intended field after college is a daunting experience. In an applicant pool of thousands of other students who majored in the same exact thing as you, how do you set yourself apart from everyone else?

The skills and knowledge you learn in a classroom setting can only help you so much unless you actually apply everything you have learned outside of the classroom. Clubs and organizations are a great way to find groups of individuals who are seeking the same experiences you are, but the most supplemental way to make the best out of everything you have learned and stand out as an applicant is to get an internship.

Internships are honestly a part of the college experience, and having an amazing internship can change your life for the better in ways you never would have imagined possible. An internship can open more doors for opportunities related in your desired field, you can network among individuals who can mentor and guide you, and sometimes, you meet people who will be a part of your life for a really long time.

I am going to be blunt here, the process of securing a great internship can be difficult at times; it can especially be more difficult if you have zero experience correlating in that field. Take it from someone who changed their major from the different side of the spectrum—biology to English—and the only professional experience I had was being a co-manager at a retail store.

I cannot begin to tell you how many internships I applied to in content creating, editing, or research opportunities, only to be flat our rejected or never even hear back from. My favorite rejection e-mail was from a publishing agency questioning why I even bothered to apply with the little experience I had and commented plentiful on the science courses I had taken, practically mocking me. I am not being dramatic when I say for an entire two semesters—summer and fall—that I applied over and over again only to be continuously rejected as my peers were securing some of the coolest internships locally and out-of-state.

It is exhausting to constantly feel defeated every time you receive an e-mail along the lines of "Thank you for applying to our company for this desired internship position. Unfortunately, …" You put out the best version of yourself and it's hard not taking it personally. Despite all the rejection emails you might receive, no matter how defeated you may feel, I can promise you that eventually, someone is going to look at your application and really see the potential you possess and take that opportunity to hire you onto their team.

For every rejection e-mail I received, I kept telling myself "this is a blessing in disguise." I will admit, there were periods of time that got the best of me and I stopped applying as frequently as I usually did, but I never genuinely stopped applying. After two semesters of continuously applying, I finally received a paid internship that was willing to work alongside my school schedule, and this opportunity was better than any other internship I applied for in the past combined. Someone finally took a chance with me and all the months of rejections leading up to this point were worth it.

My advice?

1. Apply as early as internships allow you.

The earlier you apply, the faster you will hear a response.

2. Apply to positions even if you're under-qualified.

Take a chance and never settle. Sometimes, companies are willing to train you even if you don't meet all the credentials they're looking for!

3. Connect unrelated experiences.

If you're like me and you have absolutely zero experience in a field you're applying to, try making connections with things you have experience with. For example, for my biology courses, I would say in interviews for internships in content creating that I have the ability to create different content on various topics and that I was very detail-oriented.

4. Apply to many internships.

Don't just apply to one and hope for the best. Apply to as many opportunities you come across because someone is bound to call you back eventually.

5. Sell yourself in your interview.

Show them the best version of yourself and what you can bring to the company. Not every company is going to be the best fit for you, but this is your time humbly brag about all the hard work you have done so own it.

The process for applying to internships can be bittersweet, but I never gave up and you shouldn't either.

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