American sports fans: We are all hypocrites.
Why lay such a potentially slanderous charge against such a large and diverse group of people as the American sports fan?
The typical American sports fan deplores violence. Absolutely detests it. A hard slide or a late hit or an overly aggressive check into the boards, and the typical American sports fan spits venom as he speaks of the unsportsmanlike conduct that begets such viciousness.
But on the inside, we actually love viciousness. We love the brain-jarring hits in football, the violent collisions at the plate in baseball and the action-halting fistfights in hockey.
We just want to be disgusted because it makes us feel better about the fact that we are actually titillated by violence.
And that makes us hypocrites.
Let's have a look at the top 40 most vicious hits in sports history.