Social issues in sport

Having worked at Sport in Society for a little over 2 months now, I have learned that sport truly is a microcosm representative of the world’s social issues.  Whether it be related to drug use, equality, homophobia or diversity, troubling issues within our society are also mirrored within the world of sport.  The significance of this reality is that sport provides the platform to talk about these issues

So when high profile athletes make the news it allows for open discussion of often controversial issues.  Most recently, former Red Sox player and fan favorite Manny Ramirez made headlines for domestic battery charges.  Though an unfortunate event for everyone involved, the incident without a doubt raised awareness on the issue of domestic violence.

As a criminal justice major, I have been educated on the controversies, laws and even myths revolving around domestic violence.  A major topic of discussion has always been the matter of police involvement.  Should mandatory arrests be made?  Is domestic violence a personal matter to be dealt with at home?  What is the best response when responding to a domestic violence call?  One thing that can be agreed upon is that there are proactive strategies to domestic violence that should be utilized.

One of those proactive solutions is educating high school youth on dating violence.  Sport in Society has a program called Mentors for Violence Prevention (MVP) which encompasses the proactive theories I have discussed with my classmates and professors.  MVP is a leadership program that seeks to prevent gender violence, and it is exactly the type of program that should be taught in high schools and colleges.

Domestic violence isn’t a rare occurrence and it certainly isn’t limited to professional baseball players and their families.  Instead, it involves both male and female victims and abusers, and is sadly an overlooked problem.  I’m happy to have witnessed the success and popularity of the MVP program while being a co-op at SIS.

Manny Ramirez article:  http://www.thebostonchannel.com/sports/29163472/detail.html

Posted by: Courtney Mortimer