Donald Fehr needs to step up and save his union
I believe that the recent firestorm surrounding ARod's steroid use has finally tipped the scales of public opinion against the players union. I think public sentiment was already edging that way.
I'm seeing more and more reports which cast Fehr and Orza as villains in this whole sorry affair. For the longest time, any and all of baseball's woes could be dumped at Bud's doorstep. He was an easy and seemingly worthy target for a lot of public ridicule and scorn.
Don Fehr looked like he was playing with a child in the negotiations. He was cold, calculating, ruthless and efficient. The players union won every battle, and not by just a little.
That is until they underestimated the potential ramifications of the steroid problem. Now, the have lost the one thing that they always were able to claim with impunity...... the moral high ground.
The Players Union was one of the most remarkable success stories in sports. Baseball players are better protected financially by their union than any other team sport. Football players don't even have guaranteed contracts.
It was easy for me to always side with the players union, until now. Now I'm completely ashamed of what has come of this once proud organization.
I really don't think Fehr will do anything about any of this unless he sees it to be in the best financial interest of the members. I don't think appeals to protect the younger membership, and marginal veterans alike, from the pressure of juicing to keep up will resonate with him. He let that ship sail many, many times in the past few years. He'll surely wave that flag in public, but it's a front. He's about money, and no amount of talk from him now will ever convince me otherwise.
But I do think he'll rightly assess the situation and see that he can't let this go on. The main reason? The marketability of his membership is sinking like the Titanic. This is going to cost millions in endorsements and promotional opportunities if allowed to continue.
He'll proclaim that he's doing it for the good of the game, to save future generations from the horrors of steroids. And maybe that will be enough for the public. We all just want this thing to go away.
But the truth is that he sold out the membership time and time again throughout this newest "era" of our beloved game's history.... the "steroid era". It's actually official now.
I think he's backed into a corner now. He needs to get all the players reps together immediately for an emergency meeting.
Now here's the incredibly hard part. I think that the only way to put this thing to rest is full disclosure. The union needs to release the names of the remaining players on the list. Make a preemptive strike. The names are going to come out anyway.
Beg for forgiveness, overwhelm the public consciousness with this thing, and get it over and done with. These guys have a brief window of opportunity to stop this now before we get a public backlash like the '94 strike. We're not there yet, but if we keep getting a new superstars name every week or two throughout the season, this thing is going to reach critical mass.
Do the right thing, Fehr, you weasel. Protect your membership.
"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."
~ Mark Twain
Last edited by RFS62; 02-10-2009 at 05:19 PM.