Thursday, June 2
No gentle saint
"Roberto Clemente never got the chance to be old school. He died too young, at age 38, so long ago now that he has been gone longer than he was with us. That he is still remembered and revered more than four decades after his passing is a testament to the way he lived, with passion and pride, and the way he died, in a plane crash, while delivering humanitarian aid to earthquake-ravaged Nicaragua on Dec. 31, 1972. ... But Clemente was no gentle saint, and the mythologizing of him, while done with good intentions, smooths over the jagged reality of his life and times and softens the important issues that he so fiercely raised during the middle of the 20th century and that remain relevant today, both in baseball and American society. ..."