The most impressive element of the current World Cup competition from a humanistic standpoint is the fervent commitment to stamp out international racism.
The appeal is all the more dramatic and meaningful in this year's edition of the international football classic in that the host nation is South Africa, for all too many years the home of the racially oppressive system called apartheid.
Pictures of Nelson Mandela, the towering beacon of unity and fervent opponent of racism, are seen in evidence at the stadiums where the games are held throughout the nation.
Before the games begin player representatives of the competing national teams deliver statements condemning racism.
After that, in a show of unity, pictures are taken of both teams as the players that will shortly be locked in determined competition are shown posing together. The focus is on understanding and camaraderie as opposed to hate, bigotry and ignorance.
One morning last week after the final World Cup match of that day ended I turned on the radio. As I switched the dial I came to Rush Limbaugh and listened to him explain how Emma Lazarus' inspiring words were never meant to be a symbol for the nation.
The nation's heritage of immigrants coming to America to better themselves and the message contained in the words of Emma Lazarus preserved for the ages on Ellis Island not only are not that meaningful to Limbaugh, but were never meant to be accepted in any national context.
It was Big Brother liberalism once more rearing its ugly head that gave Emma Lazarus along with her words their permanence.
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