WaPo Sportswriting Martyr John Feinstein Stays Home From Final Four Because Of Texas Gun Laws

Imagine expecting an entire tournament to move to a different state just because you don't like it there.

Washington Post writer John Feinstein says he is boycotting the NCAA Final Four because it's in Texas. And he specifically asked them not to have it there!

After the Uvalde shooting in May 2022, Feinstein wrote a column urging the NCAA to pull its men's and women's Final Fours from the Lone Star State. That is, until it "fixes its gun laws."

Well, they didn't do that. The Men's Final Four tips off in Houston on Saturday, and the women face off in Dallas tonight.

So, in a new column published Thursday, Feinstein says he is staying home.

His home, by the way, is Washington, D.C. And despite having some of the strictest gun laws in the country, the District of Columbia has seen a massive spike in gun violence over the past five years.

In 2017, there were 1,573 reported violent crimes in D.C. involving a gun. In 2022, that number increased to 2,203. I'll do the math for you: That's a 40 percent jump.

But Feinstein isn't calling for all events to be pulled from Washington, D.C. Or from Chicago or New York, where crime is sky-high despite strict gun legislation.

Nah, it's easier to just blame the red states.

John Feinstein asked the NCAA to move the 2023 Final Fours.

In his column, Feinstein said he reminded the NCAA chairman of the board John J. DeGioia there was precedent for moving the tournament.

"It refused to schedule events in South Carolina for 14 years until the state finally took down the Confederate battle flag from its statehouse grounds. It also moved events from North Carolina after the passage of the so-called “bathroom bill,” an anti-LGBTQ piece of legislation. The NBA moved its All-Star Game out of North Carolina because of the same bill, and in 2021, Major League Baseball moved its All-Star Game out of Atlanta after Georgia passed a voting bill clearly designed to make it more difficult for Black people to vote."

In other words, if John Feinstein doesn't like it, everyone should boycott!

The Georgia "voter suppression" claim is a long-debunked myth, by the way. In the 2022 primary, more than 850,000 Georgians cast early ballots — a 168 percent increase over the 2018 primary and a 212 percent increase over 2020.

Far from limiting turnout of black voters, according to National Review, “at least 102,056 more Black voters cast early ballots this year than in 2018 — a more than threefold increase.”

But MLB pulled the All-Star game out of Atlanta anyway and sent it to Colorado, a state with more stringent voting laws than Georgia.

Don't let the facts get in the way of a good moral grandstand, though.

The NCAA made the right move.

Because it didn't move.

"If the NCAA had taken action, corporations — especially those that advertise on TV during the basketball tournaments and those affected directly by a major event not showing up in their city — might have begun pushing for change because the lack of legislation would cost them in dollars and in marketing," Feinstein said.

But what he fails to recognize is that Houston, which would have lost millions of dollars in revenue if the NCAA pulled the Final Four, is a largely Democrat city. It's a city full of people who probably agree with Feinstein on most issues.

And it's those people who would have been punished by such a boycott.

Just like when MLB pulled the All-Star game out of Atlanta, it's not the multi-million-dollar corporations that suffer. It's the stadium employees, vendors, souvenir shops, bars and restaurants that pay the price.

But people like John Feinstein don't care about that. They're too far up on their high horse to see the little people.

Punishing cities, fans and sports teams on the basis of politics is a dangerous precedent to set. Because you know that only goes one way.

But then again, expecting the whole world to cater to your likes and dislikes is pretty typical of the left-wing mob.

For the record, the 2024 Final Four is in Glendale, Ariz. And Arizona's gun laws are "sorely lacking," according to Feinstein.

But I think we'd all be just fine if he stayed home again.