Soccer may not be America’s sport, but even the most hardcore American football fans must admit that the World Cup is a big deal. Other than the olympics, it is the only worldwide sporting event that people actually care about. It is without doubt the biggest sporting event in the world. That is why I don’t believe you can call yourself a patriot if you don’t cheer on the USA in Brazil this summer.
People on the left and right both bemoan a lack of national institution that bind all americans together. We used to have the military draft, but Vietnam showed that conscription could divide us just as easily as it could unite us. I think the US soccer team is a perfect institution to fill this void. Here are a few reasons:
1) It is apolitical. No Republicans and Democrats here.
2) The team is multi-ethnic, multi-racial etc. What’s more American than diversity?
3) We are underdogs. Lets face it, USA isn’t a favorite to win the World Cup. But we weren’t a favorite to beat the British either. Americans love underdogs.
4) We are getting better at soccer. No longer are we an international embarrassment on the pitch.
5) Being a USA fan is a ton of fun. Look around the stadium at matches and you will see the “American Outlaws” having a great time.
6) If we manage to become better than the Europeans at soccer, we will finally be better than them at pretty much everything.
7) Clint Dempsey is a man’s man’s man.
With these things in mind, go out and cheer on the USA this summer. It will be a great way to unify the nation before the 2014 elections tear us apart.