Kevin Abourezk reminds me that context is key in his coverage of Professor Baade’s lecture, “Getting Into the Game: Is the Gamble on Sports as a Stimulus for Urban Economic Development a Good Bet?”
The Journal Star lede suggests that Nebraska Wesleyan brought Baade to speak specifically to the Haymarket Arena. Even though he explicitly says otherwise in the article’s second sentence, the sentences that follow continue to draw confusing connections between the speaker’s research and Lincoln’s arena.
The comments posted to the discussion page convey the same understanding, but challenge Baade’s relevance. (“Isn’t he comparing apples to oranges here? He’s talking about stadiums for professional sports teams.”)
Baade likely drew connections to the Lincoln arena, but the prevailing point to be made is that the arguments found in the discussion section were spurred by the writer. With a controversial subject, writers need to be careful to establish the setting.
Baade actually spoke at Nebraska Wesleyan University as part of the school’s Visions & Ventures Symposium. This year the topic was “More Than A Game: Economics, Ethics and Politics of Sports.”
The local hook got the story published (as opposed to pieces covering the Symposium’s more famous speakers). But Abourezk ought to have stepped further than a summary of Baade’s prepared remarks and his independent attempts to connect the two topics. An one-on-one interview specifically addressing the Haymarket Arena could have spurred a more relevant and informative article.
Video of Professor’s Baade’s remarks can be found at http://client.stretchinternet.com/client/nwuadmin.portal#