2002-12-14 / Sports

Beach Channel High School Must Answer Questions

Sports Columnist
By Elio Velez

Sports Columnist

Think of the image of a bulldog. Red eyes that look like an engulfed flame, teeth that are sharpened and could bite off a tree. As the bulldog sits in its crouch, it waits for someone to taunt him or her. It could be constantly pushed or even the slightest bit of disrespect can cause the dog to attack.

I’m the bulldog and Beach Channel High School is the winter of my discontent.

It started at 3:45 p.m. last Monday afternoon. I went to the front of the building to register with security to enter the ballgame. I said I was from the Wave and I wanted to report on the Beach Channel-Far Rockaway varsity men’s basketball game. It was in important game as both teams were undefeated in the PSAL Queens conference.

I was told by security, and they are just performing their jobs, that I couldn’t enter without permission from the principal, Andrea Holt. Holt, was not present at that time and I was informed that she wasn’t in the building that day. The game was about to start. I was informed that I could call the school the next morning to ask for a meeting with the principal. So the idea of covering the game was over.

Basically my front-page story for this week’s issue was reporting on the Far Rock-BC men’s game and the women’s game the following day, also at Beach Channel was totally shot. I had never encountered such a problem in the past.

The problems were only made more exasperating by the Newsday report on the game the following Tuesday by Adam Ronis. Ronis is a one of the young rising sports reporters in this city and he did an excellent job reporting on the game.

As an editor and an reporter, I sometimes plan on the fly or meticulously plan my section. On that day, I had decided to attend a good game between two high schools.

Newsday can enter and I couldn’t. It was at this point that I began to ask myself questions.

Did previous grudges against our newspaper for past stories, that I, or any other reporter wrote, cause us to be banned from BCHS? Was it security concerns that did not allow me into the building? Was I supposed to call in advance to tell them I was arriving to the game?

To get the answers, I had contacted Andrea Holt, principal of Beach Channel High School on Tuesday morning to talk to her about what happened. My idea was to possibly get some type of permission to enter the school and not cause any problems. I did not receive a call from the principal before press time. In the end, I am not allowed to enter the building.

I am writing this column to address those people who may ask why I did not cover such an important game. I did not ignore the community. A school within a community that is supposed to help not hinder shuts out a community newspaper. Kids don’t see their names in the paper and what should be a good story goes unreported.

This is not a warning or some kind of threat. I will not go that low. When I reported on the grave injustice on the unjust playoff forfeit for the BC Girls Volleyball team, I was praised from people within BC High School for reporting on it. A daily newspaper wouldn’t cover it or any other weekly newspaper. And I want do more stories that uplift the community and those which may not from both high schools.

I did not intend to write a column like this but something has to change and it’s got to change right now!

For all those people who say it’s about time that Bud Selig lifts the ban from the poor, oppressed Pete Rose, please remember what Charlie Hustle did in the first place.

The man bet on baseball, his team and has kept lying to the public about his gambling. The Dowd Report, which documented Rose’s gambling involvement, was enough evidence for Pete to take a plea in the first place to be suspended. So before people genuflect on the all time-hit king to be pardoned, Rose must confess his sins, which are piling up. The public, which is just about ready to forgive Rose for his past transgression would be enough for Selig to reinstate Rose and his eligibility into the Hall of Fame, which would be a formality.

Until next time, Peace.

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