It was with a sense of deep dismay that I read in the Feb. 9 Stanwood Camano News that no fans would be allowed at high school sports this season due to the pandemic.
I do not have family in high school, but I have a clear memory of when I played sports in school. A 16–18-year-old boy and his father can get crosswise at that age. Things can get tense in families.
Sports tended to be the only pressure relief valve for me and my dad. He would arrange his daily work schedule so he could even watch some of my practices. During the games, I could hear his voice clearly coming from the stands. He never missed a game, home or away. I knew on a deep level that he was proud of me and that while things between us weren’t always smooth, we had this one thing that united us and were able to transcend the storms that could rise up between us.
My father has long been gone. This world today would have been hard for him. If he were alive today and I had a game, he would be in the stands regardless of any mandate. He would be where he knew he needed to be — up there in the stands booming out his love and support — urging me on.
People daily go to local businesses. People even went to the Super Bowl. A complete ban on fans is not in line with what is allowed in other parts of the country, and the ban needs to be challenged.
There is room to social distance at the stadium. We are capable of devising a strategy to allow players to be encouraged by their family and friends while meeting safety concerns.