John Buol makes a good point about perceptions, image, reputation… how they matter, and how improving them helps us all.
The sport acquired a bad image due to its association with bookies and drunks. It became associated with bars and pool halls, the sort of places known to attract illegal gambling and other questionable activity. Moralists and Prohibitionists denounced the coarseness of life of anyone who played.
Several times, in the United States and abroad, this sport was outright banned. For a time, several states made it illegal to maintain any facility or equipment. Congress contemplated a 20 percent tax on the sport.
Despite all the negative media and attitude, within one generation the sport made a complete turn around.
It cleaned up its act, actively promoted events and recruited more participants, moved to better establishments, and attracted women. The sport became attractive because the places were cleaned up, more events were held and publicized, becoming more accessible to more participants, classes were held so people could learn the game…
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