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Per Chance to Dream

This article is more than 13 years old.

We'll know that times have really changed when, on some future day,
An athlete in a major sport announces that he's gay
And no one says a thing about what that young man has said,
'Cause they all know it's his concern, and they're concerned instead
With how the guy plays defense, and with how the team has played,
Or maybe with the sal'ry cap because of what he's paid.

We'll know, as well, that we have moved beyond the present time
When no one who was banged up playing football in his prime
Is living in his car and wand'ring, baffled, through his days
While those still wearing uniforms and making all the plays
Accumulate the "bling" they take for granted. They don't know

That though their sport is hot now, it was not quite always so.
In some more happy time the league wherein the damaged toiled
And had their bodies ruined and their futures largely spoiled
Will not deny the wreckage is the consequence of when
These workers beat each other up, and then did so again.
The NFL will tax itself, its owner billionaires,
And tax its active players, too, and demonstrate it cares
About the knees and backs and brains of men who now depend
Upon the largesse of a league that can't remember when
It wasn't TV's darling. Now it is, and it should pay
The men who helped to build it, not just hope they'll go away.

It's easy, I suppose, to scoff at visions of a day
When tolerance will trump the hatred holding present sway,
And greed will fall to mercy as the clock ticks down to nil,
Within our games and well beyond, but if it's easy, still,
I like to think it's not insane to dream. Would you allow
The dreaming here is less insane than how the world wags now?

This program aired on February 15, 2007. The audio for this program is not available.

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