The Boston Globe sports columnist Dan Shaughnessy took aim at Atlanta, the Falcons and our fans.
This is our response:
We’d like to begin by paraphrasing your opening statement to this:
We do not hate Boston nor its sports fans. We can’t even summon the old “Gone With The Wind” line when Rhett Butler tells Scarlett that “Frankly, I don’t give a damn.”
But if we did we would be guilty of following you into the muck.
Instead our answer is this…
You are Boston. Your city’s storied history is one all Americans feel pride for. There is no doubt of your incredible contributions to this nation. We cherish and honor that with the additional knowledge that, largely, your history has already been written.
We are Atlanta. Our new history is just beginning to unfold from an old history that you might recall.
There was a time in our collective pasts when the Sons of Boston rose up in arms. They joined those to march on us; and when they got here, they burned our city – board and nail – to the ground.
Still we were not beaten. Those ashes became the fertile soil of a revival. Of a place that now strives to become the next great city of the world. From that smolder came a phoenix rising from ruin to soar across the South. We are Atlanta.
You are Boston. Not long ago, when your town was hurting, we mourned your losses at the Marathon. We all joined “Boston Strong” from the distance. We prayed you would find healing. And when Patriots Day came again, and your best crossed that finish line without fear while Fenway cheers echoed across the way, we too rejoiced.
Now one of your adopted sons, a gunslinger schooled out of Chestnut Hill, joins the sons of Georgia and Florida and Alabama and beyond to lead a new march south, rallying behind a new cause, to Houston and Super Bowl LI. Our best will cross a different finish line on a different mission. And we will then rejoice in a different way.
You are Boston. Your sports accomplishments are a source of tremendous civic pride. Your teams fought and earned all their titles and your fans cried with joy at all your parades. But instead of reveling in all that glory, you instead chose to sink into the mud of Rumney Marsh.
Instead of welcoming us to one of the parties you seem to host annually, you fired shots in a war that does not exist.
You pointed out we have but one major pro sports championship. Which we know and accept is true. Today.
But after that fact…
You dismissed our teams as irrelevant, slammed our fans as uncaring and failed miserably in an attempt to use the pride we here have in the greatness of collegiate football as a hammer to pound on a people you obviously don’t know or understand.
You even went so far as to say you pity us.
Yet we do not envy you.
Yes, you are Boston. You’ve been there, many times. Please, act like it.
We are Atlanta. We are going there. When we arrive we will hold ourselves high.
You are Boston. When Sunday a week comes Atlanta will wish you good luck! And you will find that you need it.
We are… Atlanta. We are… the new history.