By former Assemblyman Steven Sanders
I confess that some years ago when I was a callow fellow, I went to a professional wrestling show in upstate Glens Falls, New York. It was great fun.
Here was an array of steroid-built muscleman acting out morality plays in the ring dressed in togs and flying across the canvass pulverizing one and other. Inevitably there were the good guys against bad guys.
As interesting as it was watching these wrestlers do their thing to the inevitable scripted conclusion, I was just as fascinated by the rapt attention of the frenzied fans, thousands, who filled the seats of these arenas. They were true believers. It occurred to me that most really bought into this imagery and reveled in the brutality. They bellowed at the bad guys and nearly fainted in exhaustion cheering on their favorites. This was their opportunity to vent in a big way and cheer on the wrestlers who would bring down the hated enemy. What was interesting and more than a bit scary is that most of the fans thought that this was reality. At the height of the loathing toward Iran following the hostage takings, Hulk Hogan, that all American example of virtue, won the championship from the hated Iron Sheik. Oh what a night! Oh what celebration! We felt good to be Americans again!