ESPN tried to shame Cuba but instead highlighted the US’s own sports dystopias

What is wrong with this twitter? First, there’s no people in the photo. ESPN could be saying that nobody is outside because they’re all watching the game between Cuba’s national team and the Tampa Bay Rays where the tickets were free, compared to the megabucks one has to pay in the US or the Rogers Centre. In other words, this was such an interesting game that nothing else much is going on. But then the photo – like all the hyperbole that Cuba’s sports infrastructure is “crumbling” – blew up in EPSN’s face, as MATT NOVAK documents.

ESPN Tried to Shame Cuba's Slums But Instead Highlighted America's Own Sports Dystopias

The implication was that there was poverty just outside the stadium where Obama was watching the game between the Tampa Bay Rays and the Cuban national team. But the first response to the tweet reminds Americans that we have no right to get on any high horse about poverty. In fact, the conditions outside our own stadiums appear much more dire.

ESPN Tried to Shame Cuba's Slums But Instead Highlighted America's Own Sports Dystopias

 

People started to tweet Google Street View shots showing the streets outside of major American stadiums.

ESPN Tried to Shame Cuba's Slums But Instead Highlighted America's Own Sports Dystopias

Deadspin’s Barry Petchesky pointed out that Willets Point, where the Mets play at Citi Field, doesn’t even have sidewalks or sewers.

ESPN Tried to Shame Cuba's Slums But Instead Highlighted America's Own Sports Dystopias

(A reader of Matt Novak’s piece, Robert Sorokanich, pointed out: “Jalopnik did a fantastic on-the-street story about what’s going on at Willets Point, where mechanics held a hunger strike to protest plans to evict them to expand the stadium.”)

So I guess before you start calling out Cuba for being poverty stricken, maybe sports commentators at ESPN should get out of their box seats and look outside some American stadiums.

ESPN Tried to Shame Cuba's Slums But Instead Highlighted America's Own Sports Dystopias

Update 6:12pm: Bob Ley was just interrupted on live TV. Maybe they saw SportsCenter’s tweet at Google’s new tech center in Havana.

http://gizmodo.com/ajax/inset/iframe?id=twitter-712401294246469633&autosize=1

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