Once Joe Flacco signed his contract with the Baltimore Ravens, which could wind up paying him $120 million, it didn't take long for the nay-sayers to put down their coffee mugs and pick up their keyboards so they could put down their quarterback.
The online objections took two basic forms:
1 - "He's good, but he's not all that good." This, of the man who has been in the NFL for five years, has led his team into the playoffs as the starting quarterback ever since he got here from right up the road at the U of Delaware, and won the Super Bowl this past season, being named MVP of the game. What he could have done to be better goes unsaid, but remember, these are people who don't play the game; they merely criticize those who do.
2 - "Why should he make all that money when police officers, firefighters, schoolteachers and surgeons don't?" First, I'm not sure that surgeons don't make that sort of money. And as far as police, firefighters, teachers and other valuable public servants are concerned, yes, they do deserve a nice living for all they do. If the world were fair, we'd all be making a salary commensurate with our contributions to society. But life is not fair. The fact is, if people were willing to pay over a hundred dollars for a ticket and 25 more for a hot dog and a beer, and television networks could sell commercials for millions more in order to show them on TV, cops, firefighters and teachers would all be driving Rolls-Royces to the bank a couple of times a week. Flacco and the other players in the NFL are in show business, you have to understand. For everyone who says, "Oh, they're just men playing a boys' game!" I say they are men whom people are willing to pay for the right to watch them play that game. Play-acting is a kids' game too, and it's fun when little Ethan down the street stands in the front of little Sally's front porch and she does that "Wherefore art thou?" speech. But when people become professional at it, you're shelling out 12 bucks at the CineMagic17 to watch Jennifer Lawrence play-act in a movie. It's entertainment for the masses, and the masses pay to be entertained.
For those still concerned about the pay inequities between a cop and a quarterback, I'll add this...You can help make the cop feel better by not whining to him or her about how bank robbers are running loose while they're writing you a ticket for speeding in a school zone. And you can make the teachers in your life feel better by supporting them at home and in the classroom by helping your kids with their homework, and by not calling the Board of Education because Ms Krobapple made little Brattleboro upset by reminding him for the 17th time since September not to holler out in class.
Tomorrow, let's talk about why we mustn't holler at the weather forecaster.