In a perhaps surprising move, the World Series Champion Houston Astros will visit President Donald Trump in the White House. The odds are high there will be an exclamatory Trump tweet about this. Here are a few options, in case he’s reading in a bout of tweeter’s block:
“Astros coming to visit me in the White House. Amazing athletes, even better patriots. Can’t say the same about the doodoo head Warriors!”
“Happy to be hosting the incredible World Champion Astros at the White House. I’ll be happier when I see those buttface Warriors lose this season!!”
“Взволнованный, чтобы быть с Астрос сегодня, просто не позволяйте им заглянуть в Ситуационную комнату! #Путин”
Always exclamation points, always childish insults, always Google Translate, always Trump.
The Astros are not the first professional sports team or first championship team to visit Trump in the White House, but after a classic Trump Twitter episode, the Golden State Warriors were uninvited after their championship. Steph Curry had tweeted something about Golden State not wanting to visit, to which Trump basically said ‘Fine! Then you’re not invited to my birthday!’
Many athletes have expressed displeasure with the President over allegations of sexual assault and racism, all of which the President has adamantly denied. His travel ban early in his presidency also brought the disdain of many, who interpreted it as a Muslim ban.
Professional sports teams have been visiting the White House since the 1860s, and World Series Champions have been visiting since 1924. Houston’s plans to go fall right in line with baseball tradition, but they come in a time when athletes and basically any high-profile person isn’t happy with President Trump. Despite the outrage, the visit seems to be a great tradition and is indeed an honor for the visiting team. Certainly not every athlete who has visited has been 100% in agreement with the host president, but they visited anyway.
This is an age when people are quick to speak out on issues they disagree with. Social media, particularly Twitter, allows anyone to issue a compact statement on any issue. While athletes are always brought under fire for controversial statements, President Trump’s exclamatory, accusatory, controversial, and sometimes childish tweets have led some to label his social media behavior as ‘non-presidential’. In this context, it makes sense why some teams are eager to buck tradition and make a statement greater than that in a Tweet. Ending a decades-long tradition, particularly one as high profile as visiting the most powerful man in the world, is certainly a statement that can’t be bottled up in 140 characters or a hashtag. But is visiting despite outrage as great of a statement?
In a time when the nation is as divided as ever, a group of men, many of whom are immigrants, and all of whom represent a region of the country that needed significant help this year, this visit means everything. While tweets and signs and choosing to be offended divide the country, perhaps swallowing one’s pride and going through with a relatively simple gesture, even if the other party is drowning in their own pride, is a greater sign of unity.