Troy and Cory have had very different lives. In comparison to Troy's harsh childhood, Cory's has been pretty easy. He hasn't had to struggle as much as Troy did. When Troy was younger, racial discrimination was even worse than during the '50s, when the play is set. We are still in the time before the Civil Rights Movement, but some advancements have been made. For example, professional sports teams have been integrated. This fact gives Cory a real chance at a sports career, while his father had none. All these factors add up to make Troy a much more bitter character than his son. Though it's easy to demonize Troy, it's important to realize that many of his actions are the result of his harsh upbringing.