By Dayna O’Gorman, Official Seahawks Fan Reporter
Due to the increase in fan violence, many stadiums are increasing security. In a few stadiums around the league, limiting or eliminating tailgating and alcohol is being discussed. Ticket prices are going up for a lot of reasons, but increasing the numbers of ushers and police at games is a part of that. New regulations and restrictions are coming into place in many parts of the country simply because fans can’t control themselves.
My question to you is, why? What is the benefit of trash talking a fan on Twitter? What is the fun in throwing food or swearing at a fan of the away team at a game? What is the point? It doesn’t make your team any better or theirs any worse. I understand the thrill of competition but what about the joy of sportsmanship? I am so baffled by these things and no one can give me any answer except, “Its part of the game, Dayna”.
Well, I disagree. On the field, I can understand it being part of the game. My favorite player in the league is the king of trash talk. However, when Richard Sherman does it to another player, it can actually benefit him by getting into their heads and taking them off their game. When a fan trash talks it isn’t going to make the other fan say, “Oh my, you are so right! I’m going to abandon my team and cheer for yours!”. All it does is increase the hatred between teams which can then be the cause of the horrible violence that is breaking out in our stadiums.
I propose a push for fans to be classy.
I posted the question on Twitter, “How do you define a classy fan?”. The responses varied but had one main theme. A classy fan loves the game, loves their team, but is RESPECTFUL of other teams and other fans. Respect doesn’t mean you have to like or support a team or its fans, but understand that they love their team as much as you love yours and they should be able to do that without risk of injury or harm to themselves.
It means that you, as a fan, respect the game of football enough to enjoy it as much as possible, and letting others do the same. Being a gracious winner is as important as being a gracious loser. There isn’t anything YOU as a fan can do to change the way a game turns out – running your mouth or belittling other fans or the players, included.
I’m not trying to be all goody goody here. I’m not saying I don’t get super pissed when the Seahawks lose or a little cocky when they win. I get it. What I’m saying is, being hateful to other fans or players does nothing but give NFL fans a bad reputation and drags us down instead of letting the love of this sport lift us. Over the next few months, I’ll be profiling fans and players who embody the definition of class. I hope you’ll read about them and maybe learn that it is possible to be passionate and still be classy.
I like to think of myself as a classy fan. Can you say the same about yourself?
Send me a tweet @DaynaOG
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