Warning to NASCAR Dopes: Someone Is Going to Die
We know what would happen, of course. If Carl Edwards was driving down a freeway somewhere in America and decided to play a vindictive game of bumper cars, he'd be convicted of vehicular assault and sent to jail for months, if not years. But out on a NASCAR track, in a souped-up racing machine speeding at 195 miles per hour with thousands of spectators close by, an angry Edwards somehow is allowed to retaliate against Brad Keselowski by purposely wrecking into his car and sending it airborne into the front-stretch retaining fence in Atlanta.
This is beyond lunacy. It's an invitation for tragedy, the equivalent of Major League Baseball granting its pitchers permission to head-hunt, a death game that endangers drivers and fans in the name of creating attention and television ratings for a fading sport. The problem with the gearheads who run NASCAR is that they think drivers and fans can't die at the track. Let me state right here, right now, that we're going to have a funeral or two sooner than later if these foolish, desperate good-old-boys don't reassess their policies and prevent drivers from retaliating inside their moving coffins.
Incredibly Tuesday, NASCAR didn't suspend Edwards for his scary and very intentional run at Keselowski last Sunday, an incident that came when he was trailing by a whopping 153 laps. Staying true to its shameful "boys, have at it" philosophy -- permitting drivers to police themselves and settle scores amid bad wrecks and heat-of-the-battle disagreements -- president Mike Helton announced that Edwards has been placed on probation for three weeks. In real life, this is akin to an enraged motorist sending another driver into a guardrail and totaling his car, only to receive a $5 fine. Personally, I would banish Edwards for the rest of the season and send him to a shrink. But in the fantasy world of NASCAR, where they pretend that cars are props and human beings are mannequins, he will keep driving in the Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series. Why? Oh, probably because Edwards has a sponsor, Aflac, and in the current economy within a financially struggling sport, it's better to give a hall pass to a vehicular maniac than risk losing a major account.
Sad. And sick.