Just think if, in 1997, Tiger Woods' golf clubs were branded with "chicken wings," because Fuzzy Zoeller was upset that a black man won the Masters and donned the green jacket. Or, imagine if, in 1997, Mike Tyson's boxing gloves were branded with severed "ear pieces," for his controversial biting tactic during his fight with Evander Holyfield. Or, image the horror if, in 1993, Michael Jordan's tennis shoes were emboldened with hearts, spades, clubs and diamonds, for his documented gambling habit.
While no two events are ever exactly alike (or without their differences), people should find it appalling that any individual, with enough financial reserves, has the capability to purchase the past and control its future, by marring a historical piece of sports history. Nevertheless, with online marketing and multimedia propaganda, the "public" allowed Marc Ecko to taint history before it had the chance to evolve over time and take its rightful course.
Quite simply, it goes without saying that there are several sects of baseball fans that feel that if they can destroy Bonds' legacy before it is canonized, then perhaps he will not have a legacy at all. While that's quite an impossible feat, until his record is actually broken, branding his record-breaking ball with an asterisk, for them, will be a consolation prize.
THE FINAL WORD: It is quite ironic that, even in 2007, the legacy and livelihood of a black man can still be sold-- at auction-- to the highest bidder, despite the fact that he may be world-famous and have millions of dollars in his bank account. What happened to our sense of justice and fair play? If the sports "system" called the "league" has not found him guilty of any wrong doing, how can one outspoken "juror" overrule their judgment? Cooperstown should not accept the "branded" ball, if for no other reason, because they too would be an implicit accompanist to a grand scheme that allowed one person to derail its process for determining greatness. Simply put, Marc Ecko does not respect the league's stance on Bonds' legacy and has decided that he, through his wealth, is going to change the result.
"uhuru ni upinduzi" — "Freedom through Revolution!"