I’m tired of it.

It’s not a partisan thing. It’s not a political thing. It’s not a regional thing. It’s baseball.

It’s an American thing.

Yet since the proverbial dawn of time, man has attempted to use baseball as a metaphor for politics, and politicians have tried to use the sport for their own gain.

I’m here to say cut that out.

A week ago I and a few other BoSox Believers sat glued to the uncomfortable furnishings of Hoya Court, our eyes securely fastened to the projected images of Game 5 of the ALCS on the wall. In the week that has elapsed since that game, much has been written and even more has been said of the entire series.

But I won’t soon forget what one of those Hoya Court hopefuls – clad in the standard-issue blue Red Sox t-shirt – said to me as the game went into its 13th inning.

“America needs this.”

He tried to convince me that the against-all-odds comeback – the beginnings of which we were watching at that moment – was a metaphor for something even bigger. It was a sign, he said. If the Red Sox can do it, so can John Kerry.

I don’t buy it.

Let me make one thing abundantly clear – I root for the Red Sox, and I’ll vote for John Kerry, but there’s no correlation. There’s no vast left- or right-wing conspiracy aimed at making the Red Sox – or any other team – a model for a presidential candidacy.

Sure, Kerry may be from Massachusetts and a lifelong die-hard Sox fan, while Bush once made several pretty pennies as owner of the Texas Rangers. But in the end, baseball is more about the last few weeks in October than about the first Tuesday after the first onday in November. Even this year.

Campus is always politically split. Last week campus was split almost 50-50 throughout the ALCS between us, the good guys, and them, the Yankee fans. (OK, they’re not exactly the bad guys, per se. I’m sure there are some very lovely and pleasant New Yorkers out there – they’re just lovely, pleasant and tragically misguided.)

But you’re not going to find that all Red Sox fans are Democrats and all Yankee fans are Republicans (at least, I hope not all Yankee fans are that tragically misguided).

One MSNBC commentator argued last week that “the Red Sox come-from-behind victory over George Steinbrenner’s Yankees is an omen of what will (OK, might) happen on Election Day.”

He went on to claim that the real struggle is already over. “Even if the Red Sox lose the World Series, they have already fought the power – and won. And make no mistake: Bush-Cheney ’04 is the power – the team with the home-field advantage, the team that represents continuity, the team that the smart money is still betting on.”

But I just don’t see it. Or maybe I simply don’t want to see it. Either way, I’m not alone there. Even Kerry would prefer to keep the World Series separate from his domestic and national policies.

While watching the pivotal Game 7 of the ALCS from a hotel on the campaign trail, Kerry was asked by a reporter if the series was a metaphor for his campaign.

“We’re just playing ball here tonight,” the candidate responded, holding up both hands, fingers crossed.

A Kerry spokesman told the Boston Herald that Kerry is avoiding tying his fate to that of the Red Sox because too many times in the past has he watched his team’s World Series hopes frustrated. The last two times the Red Sox made the World Series – 1975 and 1986 – Kerry attended games. Since the Sox haven’t won the Series since 1918, it shouldn’t be too hard to guess the outcome of those Series he watched.

No, Americans didn’t need the Red Sox to come back from being down 3-0 to beat the Yankees.

Americans wanted the Red Sox to come back from being down 3-0 to beat the Yankees – whether they could admit it or not. Not because they dislike the Yankees – as American a team as any, and more so than the Blue Jays or Expos – but just to prove that it could be done. To prove that the little guy could come back to play with and even triumph over the big dogs.

It’s a myth that is not partisan, or even political. It’s just American.

Like baseball.

Derek Richmond is a senior in the College and a contributing editor for The Hoya. He can be reached at richmondthehoya.com. The W appears every Tuesday.

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