Do Fans Have the Right to Cheer at Games?

Brad JamesCorrespondent INovember 21, 2008

In south central Utah, where I grew up and am currently matriculating at Mid-Utah Radio, I have a two-and-a-half hour drive to Salt Lake City to watch the Utah Jazz, and an 8-hour drive in either direction to watch the Denver Broncos (my preference) or the Arizona Cardinals.

Thus, thanks to my parents owning an HDTV with Dish Network (much better than DirectTV, regardless of what those stupid Clark Griswold skinny-dipping commercials tell you), I usually watch my Broncos, Dallas Mavericks and other teams I like on television.

Nevertheless, for many sports fans who contribute to Bleacher Report, I'm sure things are a bit different as they go to games on a consistent basis.

My previous experiences in watching the Jazz at Energy Solutions Arena (sorry, Mark Cuban, it's too far to travel to Dallas) and the Broncos at the old Mile High Stadium have both been overwhelmingly positive, but sadly, it isn't this way for everyone.

As I was listening to sports radio WNDE out of Indianapolis online, the afternoon host, JMV, had a segment on his show wherein disgruntled Indianapolis Colts fans were punished at Lucas Oil Stadium for standing up and reportedly being too loud for fellow patrons.

Obviously, the game is for fans' enjoyment and while there are certain games (such as last night's Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Cincinnati Bengals which featured a great deal of snow) that I wouldn't want to attend, I believe that fans who buy the ticket can enjoy themselves provided they aren't belligerent toward those around them.

According to those who called in to the show, they weren't doing anything remotely controversial but because they were standing and applauding Peyton Manning, Marvin Harrison, Dallas Clark and Bob Sanders, they were taken by security.

From there, they were placed in a jail, reportedly similar to the one the old Veterans Stadium featured in Philadelphia and weren't even allowed to watch the game on closed-circuit television.

I, for one, think that this is ridiculous and whenever I've been at a game (incidentally, I prefer sitting) and other fans stand, I do as well lest my view of the field should be obscured. Thus, I think that the staff at Lucas Oil overreacted, but what do you think?