Fort Worth closed basketball courts due to coronavirus. Parks, trails could be next

March 31,2020

See full Fort Worth Star-Telegram article by Mac Engel here.

Don’t be the one who ruins this for the rest of us, and forces any one to be closer to their “loved” ones more than we already are.

Fort Worth fired a warning shot at all of us on Monday, and we had it coming.

The trails and parks are still open, but the way this is all progressing the city of Fort Worth will no choice but to make these now precious areas go the way of the basketball court.

At noon on Monday, I stopped at the basketball court under the Lancaster Avenue Bridge at the Trinity Park, across the way from downtown Fort Worth. This is the now infamous spot where the WFAA cameras caught a full, 5-on-5 basketball game of idiots playing on Sunday.

We have seen similar games played on the well-known courts at Venice Beach in Los Angeles. City leaders in New York City removed the hoops from their parks all over, including most famous city court in the U.S., Rucker Park.

Previously, all of these courts were stuffed with boneheads brazenly banging bodies against their fellow future first-ballot Hall of Famers in pickup basketball games despite the warnings, and pleas, from health officials.

I know everybody wants to ball. I do. But now is not the time to tryout for the NBA.

I was thinking (hoping?) some guys would be out there playing again, talking trash. Other than trash, the court was empty. By 12:30, the city announced it was closing its basketball and volleyball courts.

And, just to be sure, the rims are coming down, too.

The most important lesson these days does not come from a professor at Harvard, or MIT. It’s the lesson your kindergarten teacher who said, “Keep your hands to yourself.”

It doesn’t matter if you think these “flattening” out measures are needless, excessive, or panic-driven by the left-wing media. These are the guidelines.

Whatever little remaining space that is currently open, which isn’t a grocery store, I prefer remain open.

Quit crowding. Space out. Do whatever to keep these spots available to all of us.

I have paid the city of Fort Worth enough in parking fines — although I know the meters are always wrong! I do not want to open up yet another new tab because I was busted for walking peacefully in the park.

None of us wants to be in a position where we need a government issued license to go outside for 10 minutes so their dog can go do their business.

If it takes you 59 hours in the line at the DMV to get a driver’s license, double it for the walker’s license.

Everyone gets it. There is “nothing to do.” You can only clean out your closet so many times.

The last thing we need is to jeopardize our chances at being able to walk, or run, on the trail, or play in the park.

Hiding in the attic just doesn’t quite hold the same appeal, even if it is now perfectly sane and reasonable.

Walking the aisles for “fresh wine” and “fresh pork rinds” at the store, or to buy your 10th bottle of Crazy Glue from Home Depot, doesn’t quite cut it.

We are all stuck here. Only 32 more sleeps, and then maybe some of this will be over.

President Donald J. Trump extended the federal social guidance rules through the end of April. That is best case.

Two more months of this feels like it’s not only on the table, but inevitable.

For the next month, at least, do what they say.

They took away our basketball courts. The volleyball courts are out.

Please, everybody, don’t give them a reason to close our trail, or to take away our park.