Everyone has heard, read, watched or experienced the tragedy that was the Boston Marathon yesterday afternoon. Approximately 3 hours after the winners crossed the finish line of the world’s most famous marathon, 2 homemade bombs exploded just a few yards away from the finish line. The bombs exploded within seconds and feet of each other and the aftermath has been nothing but horror from those who experienced it live to compassion from just about everyone else in the world.
Countless Facebook posts and tweets filled cyberspace in reaction to the reports that started pouring in at around 3 pm. As of noon today, the number of those injured by the blast seem to be holding steady at 3 dead, including an 8 year old child, and approximately 180 injured. Those who are responsible for the bombings are still unknown and at large, and reports were confirmed that a third bomb went off at JFK library a few miles from the marathon finish line.
“Boston will overcome,” Mayor Thomas Menino promised. That seems to be the message that officials speaking on behalf of the city and the nation are expressing and it is fitting. We as a nation have shown we can overcome situations like this, we will unite and come back stronger than ever, and that is for damn sure.
The effect on the sports world has been huge. As per tradition for Patriots Day in Boston, the Boston Bruins had a home game scheduled for Monday night, which was promptly postponed to preserve the safety of all those planning on attending the game. Today, the Boston Red Sox game has been cancelled for the same reason.
What exactly does this mean for the future of spectator sports like the Boston Marathon? Although heightened security is a virtual certainty, what else will come of this? My guess? I think that you will see beefed up security at all sporting events for the foreseeable future and an increase in the amount of bomb-sniffing dogs that will patrol the area long before spectators are scheduled to arrive. These bombs had to have been placed long before the event doors opened for them to get past the security that exists at the marathon, so look for the timetable for security sweeps of the area surrounding the events to increase. The London Marathon, the next widely popular marathon on the schedule, WILL go on as planned and the London Marathon committee has assured the public that security measures will be enhanced in light of yesterdays events.
CNN anchor Piers Morgan said it best when he tweeted: “London marathon this Sunday – security at these events will never be the same again.”
Should the London Marathon still be run on Sunday? What will be the lasting effect of the Boston Marathon Bombings? Will spectator sports’ popularity fall in reaction to the increased security?