The MLB’s Unforced Error Could Be Georgia’s Walk Off Homerun
By Kelly Loefler | TownHall.com
When Major League Baseball decided to relocate the All-Star Game and Draft from Atlanta due to alleged “restrictions to the ballot box,” our country recoiled and our politicians — from the President on down to local activists — backpedaled. The fallout from the misinformation campaign means Georgians and small businesses will strike out. A Rasmussen poll showed a plurality of African American respondents disagreed with MLB’s decision and a majority agreed it was a bad idea to combine sports and politics. The great American pastime can do without a partisan power struggle.
For years, Stacey Abrams and her Democrat allies have created false narratives about Georgia’s elections and now our state is paying the price. Still refusing to acknowledge her gubernatorial defeat—saying the election was “stolen”—she’s built a business on sowing election doubts and discontent in exchange for political power. After passage of Georgia’s Election Integrity Act, Abrams launched another misinformation campaign, complete with false statements – to pave the way for an unconstitutional federal takeover of elections, known as HR1.
Big corporations like the MLB fell prey to Abrams’ big lies at the expense of hardworking Georgians. Their ready-fire-aim decision to move the All-Star game—based on laws that actually expand access to voting—has hurt the very people they claim to help. Experts estimate Georgia will lose over $100 million in expected revenue. Sadly, Black-owned businesses will feel the economic fallout. 52 percent of Atlanta’s population is African-American, and nearly 30 percent of Atlanta’s businesses are Black-owned. These small businesses are rightfully now calling out the MLB and its selfish, hypocritical decision to move the game to Denver—a city with a significantly smaller minority population and more restrictive voting laws.
Yet, this boycott is playing out here despite the fact that states like New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Delaware all provide less ballot access. With 65 percent of Fortune 500 companies incorporated in Delaware, it’s an inconvenient truth for many, from the Oval Office to the C-suite., Other outlets have noted these organizations’ attacks on Georgia, but their silence on China’s human rights violations to protect profitable business deals. Perhaps it’s easier to make these decisions when someone else pays the price.
Activists like Stacey Abrams stoke fear of reprisal by intimidating companies into complying with their demands. The mainstream media provides cover and distribution by printing their misinformation campaigns at no cost. This environment prevents the honest conversations and meaningful debates needed in the democratic process. In fact, a court of public opinion barely remains: it’s an oppressive arena of woke, liberal virtue signaling—and failure to conform means retribution.
To reinforce that, today’s media narrative is that CEO’s now need to be involved in politics. As someone who spent 30 years in the private sector starting and building successful companies, politics was for outside the office. To engage generally meant alienating some portion of our fellow employees or customer base — and there was rarely ever any upside. The simple truth is that the majority of Americans want less—not more—politics in their lives. Companies —also known as employers—provide tremendous good in our economy and help make America strong. Their economic engine helps advance society by discovering vaccines, offering a young person their first job, and giving back in their communities. But alienating half of their stakeholders by engaging in politics eliminates untold goodwill. And for many activists, the response will never be enough, it will never come at the right time, and it will never include the right words, concessions or promises.
In their response to Major League Baseball’s abrupt, ill-informed decision, the Atlanta Braves had a stirring message amid their disappointment: “Our city has always been known as a uniter in divided times and we will miss the opportunity to address issues that are important to our community…We will continue to support the community legacy projects which have been planned and are in process.”
I hope that our state will take the same hopeful response. Let’s support our Atlanta Braves to a winning season to bring the MLB World Series to Atlanta. Like no other city in the past, Atlanta has proven its ability to rise above divisive politics. We can show America a better way forward, one that’s not reliant on power-hungry politicians but on the American people who refuse to be lied to or silenced. By buying tickets to a Braves game, dining at a restaurant near the stadium, we can support the small businesses and employees whose economic opportunities were canceled by the careless words of Stacey Abrams, Joe Biden, Raphael Warnock, and the MLB. It is time for a World Series in Atlanta, and where we can properly honor Hank Aaron in a state that loved him.
If you ask me, it would be an epic walk-off, the homerun answer to Major League Baseball’s cautionary, unforced error.
Kelly Loeffler is a former US Senator from Georgia.