Having been born into the Raider Nation, my passion for my beloved Raiders runs deep. The words Commitment to Excellence, Pride and Poise, and Just Win Baby were taught to me at a very young age. For me the 80’s set the tone for what was the start of something special. The words Commitment to Excellence, and Just Win Baby really embodied what this great franchise was all about.
For most Raider fans witnessing the greatness of the Raiders in action was a weekly occurrence in the fall. The Raiders dominance was in effect from the Bay to LA and back. If you’re over the age of 30 you really know what I’m talking about. Fast forward to last week my 12 year old son, who was also born into the Raider Nation, asked me this question. "Dad why do the Raiders still use the motto Just Win Baby". "They haven’t been winning for the past 9 seasons". I paused for a second and had to find a way to explain what the Greatness of the Raiders is all about. I am sure I am not the only Raider fan having this type of conversation with their kids. I had to remind him that all teams go through tough times. And more importantly tough times don’t last.
I began to share a few stories with him of the Greatness of the Raiders. I was re-educating him on the rich history of the past. I quoted Al Davis "The flame that will burn the brightest here is the will to win". The story telling went on for about 30 minutes. My son stopped me and said "Dad, Just Win Baby." My son had tears in his eyes and said" Dad, now I know why so many people hate on the Raiders." Being a Raider fan has been tough for him. I’ve taught him to embrace the past and look forward to the future. And remind him that no matter what Win, Lose, or Tie we will always be Raider fans.
So as a proud and passionate member of the Raider Nation this had me thinking. There are probably hundreds if not thousands of young Raider fans all over the world who have been asking the very same question. This all reminded me of a quote from the late great Al Davis. "We have young people in very key spots now running our organization while those people can use the past as a guide and can live in the tradition and history of the organization someone has to take this group into the future and make sure they have greatness".
So Raider Nation it’s up to us, the older generation, to keep the younger generation’s passion for our beloved Raiders deep. Al Davis said it best "The greatness of the Raiders is in its future". Whether the return to glory happens in 2012 our young fans can embrace the past and look forward to the future. These slogans, The Commitment to Excellence, Pride and Poise, and Just Win Baby will forever be apart of the Raiders. The most imitated the most respected and most feared organization in the world.
Twitter @LILAL DAVIS