Some people take sports way too seriously and will actually resort to fighting fellow fans or saying horrible things to athletes when their favorite team loses. The latest victim of such abuse is Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Torrey Smith.
Smith tweeted out the following on Tuesday morning:
Played a lot of games since my brothers death and I never received as many rude tweets after a win than Sunday...yet NE fans cry about class— Torrey Smith (@TorreySmithWR) January 22, 2013
Jamison Hensley of ESPN offers more insight and context on the matter:
The sad part is this isn't the first time Smith has had to deal with this. Shortly after Smith helped the Ravens beat the Patriots in September, only hours after his brother had died, someone taunted him on Twitter, saying, "Hey, Smith, how about you call your bro and tell him about your wi--- ohhhh. Wait. #TooSoon?"
Smith's younger brother, Tevin, died in a motorcycle accident in September. Having to deal with that loss must have been devastating enough, but then being mocked about it by some bozo on Twitter?
It's just unbelievable.
I know this was likely isolated to a few misguided Patriots fans, so I'm not going to blast the entire fanbase or anything. But to those who did make any inappropriate remarks to Smith, I only have one question:
Why be so cruel just because a team you watch lost a football game that, in the grand scheme of things, was meaningless? Why try to bring somebody down just because you take sports way too seriously? Why act this way?
There are just too many examples of fans deciding they can treat athletes any way they like, as though the people they watch play these games are commodities, not human beings. It's not just an American issue—it happens quite a bit in Europe as well, where racist remarks from soccer fans are a huge issue.
Just because you can find an athlete on Twitter and want to blow off some steam doesn't give you the right to be a jerk. Just because you are a rabid fan doesn't give you license to behave boorishly in the name of your team.
You've probably seen the ESPN commercials where fans are seen behaving in odd manners, and every commercial ends with the words, "It's not crazy. It's sports."
Except that sometimes it is crazy. This is one of those times.