Not afraid to ask ‘Why sport?’ as teaching and learning

To the Editor:

As a Chuck Agonito fan, I cringe every time the Finger Lakes Times runs something of his that’s bound to provoke the PC police, or prod the woke mob. In “The Questions: Who, What, Where, When and ?” (JumpStart, Nov. 14), Agonito writes that the “why?” element of a story is “rarely” asked in “this time of political correctness.” I don’t know how Agonito regularly gets away with the impolitic, but I’m sure glad he does.

At the end of his story about a Geneva elementary school student having to rustle up $4,000 for playground equipment, which was left out of the GCSD’s $56 million budget, Agonito recalls how his fifth-grade teacher, Angelo Capizzi, modeled respect for and from everyone during academic recess. After crediting the few — Marco Palmisano, his parents, and Hobart and William Smith Colleges— for raising the money, Agonito respectfully suggests that there are plenty of other GCSD stakeholders that should have been paying more attention to the physical education needs of our elementary school students. As a GCSD stakeholder who might have taken the time to know — as well as an Agonito fan — I cringed a little more.

About the same time that Capizzi was encouraging Agonito, Albert Camus would receive a Nobel Peace for a lifetime of fearless truth-telling that urged his readers to examine their obligations to each other as fellow human beings. Agonito writes that “Not all learning takes place in a classroom.” About that truth, Camus, witness to our 20th century’s inhumanity, famously said this: “After many years, during which I saw many things, what I know most surely about morality and the duty of man I owe to sports and I learned it in the RUA.” As a teen, Camus played goalkeeper for the RUA, a soccer team.

Agonito and Camus. Unafraid of reminding us of our obligations to each other. And why.



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