To the Editor:

Sept. 11, 2001 will be remembered as the day of one of the world’s great tragedies, and perhaps the foremost catastrophe to ever happen in the United States. The thousands of lives that perished need to be respected and mourned, and compassion should be given for their surviving loved ones. But the forced cancellation of all Yale’s weekend athletic contests is not the way to go about this.

These terrorists have already succeeded in stopping American life. Financial markets have shut down, airlines have been grounded, shops have closed, the revered Twin Towers have been destroyed, and American blood has been spilled.

The decision to call off all competitions this weekend negatively affects the passions and hard work of the teams and athletes that still desire to compete, and by interrupting the lives of more individuals in this way, we are only helping the terrorists to extend the effect they desired: to terrorize and halt Americans.

By the time the weekend arrives, five days will have passed since the tragedy. For most Yale students who have been actively watching the television news and reading the papers, Saturday afternoon will not be the first or the last time they will have reflected upon the destruction and respect the memories of those killed in the calamity.

If teams do decide they would prefer to sit out Saturday and reflect upon what has happened, for whatever reason, then that decision should be respected and an option to not compete given. Forcing athletes and teams to surrender their schedules wrongfully sacrifices more freedom that the terrorists tried to destroy.

America was founded upon the virtues of diligent work and fair competition. Staying true to these virtues this weekend would prove the American spirit is still alive.

JC Reindl ’03

September 12, 2001