You probably didn’t know that Trump’s Attorney General Jeffrey Beauregard Sessions is a baseball coach in Texas.
That’s because he isn’t, but he would almost certainly approve of Texas Wesleyan baseball coach Mike Jeffcoat, who responded to a promising candidate that he would not be considered because he comes from Colorado, a state which five years ago approved the recreational use of marijuana.
Gavin Bell, who is a senior at Cherokee Trail High School in Aurora, Colorado, had sent out a number of query letters to various colleges asking for insight into their recruiting process.
He was shocked by what he got back from Jeffcoat.
In an email, Jeffcoat thanked him for his interest but said, “In the past, players have had trouble passing our drug test. We decided not to take a chance on student-athletes from your state. You can thank you, liberal politicians.”
Sessions as Attorney General has cracked down on the use of marijuana, which is widely smoked around the country even though there are still criminal penalties under federal law for having any pot or using it.
Under President Obama, federal authorities chose to ignore that law, especially in the six states that have made it legal for recreational use and a number of others where it is legal for medicinal use.
Trump and Sessions like to drink alcohol, which does a lot more damage to the body and society than marijuana, but it does not fit with their conservative mentality, so they have revived the witch hunts of pot users – which almost always hits the poor and minorities most.
When Bell got that email from Jeffcoat he felt wronged.
“That’s not what I’m about,” Bell told CBS-TV in Denver. “I’m about playing baseball and getting good grades in school.”
“Back then (when marijuana was legalized) I wasn’t even 18 to have any say in this, and now it’s being brought upon me.”
Bell wanted to see if he was unusual for being so surprised by the response he got from the Texas coach, so he shared it with some of his teachers and coaches.
One of them passed it on to Denver sports radio host Darren McKee,, who tweeted it.
Lol THIS really happened. Smh. pic.twitter.com/bF9ywQw15d
— Darren McKee (@dmac1043) February 28, 2018
Then interest exploded all over the country as it went viral.
Bell was overwhelmed by the response which was beyond what he anticipated.
“My intention really wasn’t to do anything to hurt anybody or get anybody fired,” said Bell. “It was just me talking to coaches and my loved ones like, ‘What do I do with it?'”
It was no doubt embarrassing for Jeffcoat and for the university
Texas Wesleyan University responded with a statement that they know about the email sent by the coach but it “in no way is a reflection of Texas Wesleyan University or its valuer or its recruiting practices.”
Beyond that, the university said it was a personnel matter which was private.
This is a reminder that America has really become two separate countries with different views, different morality, and a different mindset.
It is not just that Texas is conservative and Colorado is liberal because you can find people of both views in each place.
However, it is about a state that lives in the past and is ruled by old-fashioned morality and a state that is part of the future where people get to make their own choices about how they live, work and what they do for recreation.
In this case, it is a loss for the university and for the young athlete who are both caught in their own culture where there is no room for compromise.