WASHINGTON (AP) — Just past noon on Election Day, after casting her vote where the NBA’s Wizards and NHL’s Capitals play, Mary Pittman exited through one of the arena’s glass doors. Perched on the 77-year-old retiree’s walker: a stars-and-stripes hat touting the basketball team, autographed on the brim in fresh black ink.
“No line,” Pittman said about Tuesday’s balloting. “No waiting. No confusion. No fuss.”
At a time when athletes are embracing activism like never before, refusing to heed the unfounded admonition framed two years ago by one TV talking head as “shut up and dribble,” there was vivid symbolism in the wide use of team arenas and stadiums as voter registration and polling sites.
If the United States’ fields of play once were walled off from politics — Colin Kaepernick, whose 33rd birthday happened to be Tuesday, saw his sideline…