by: JOSHUA RAMIREZ/Sports Editor
Professional sports have always had a strong sense of pride and attachment from its fans.
But at what point does passion spill over and become violence, putting innocent spectators at risk?
A tragic incident took place outside The Dallas Cowboys football stadium in Arlington, Texas when a fan was shot and killed during an altercation after the New England Patriots’ victory against the Dallas Cowboys on Oct. 11.
Though this incident may be the most recent, it’s only one in a long line of violent acts that have happened in pro sports settings in past years.
Just last season, there were two incidents in Denver, one of which ended with three stabbing victims.
A few months before the incident in Denver, a teenager was attacked by a 29-year-old male at Candlestick Park in San Fransico, after the 49ers lost to the Colts 27-7 on Sept. 22 2013.
It’s true pro sports have become a source of extreme passion, frustration, and animosity for fans and rivals. But the violence in the stands is not something that is ever justified.
The bottom line is that we are watching games that, in the grand scheme of things, really don’t matter at all. If your favorite team losses, it’s not going to keep you from paying your bills, or taking care of your kids, or yourself.
These fans who cannot keep their emotions in check and react with violence against others have lost all sense of perspective in a environment that amplifies their passion, anger, and sometimes even heart break, to levels that causes common sense to fly out the window and bad decisions to be made.
Stadiums and arenas across all professional leagues have increased security in the past few years in an attempt to bring the situation under control. But when it really comes down to it, the only people who can fix this problem are the fans.
Sports rivalries aside, what pro sports fans need to understand is that they are not on the team. The team does not care about them, and the outcome for the team really doesn’t affect anything other than the amount of time you are likely to spend in front of the television.
A man was shot and killed after the Cowboys-New England game, so who else was there with him? Did a child have to watch his or her father die because of a football game? Or maybe a child never got to meet the man who would have been his father. When you take into account those things, is it really worth it?
Is it really worth it for someone to lose a father, son, brother, or any other significant other because of the final score of a football game?
These things are just a few of the possible ripple effect of these acts of violence. It seems that fans are beginning to lose the ability to see past the color of a jersey to recognize that there are people who actually matter wearing them.