The Electric Commentary

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Sports and Violence

The local news here has been fixated on a brawl that occurred following a high school basketball game. After Bradley Tech upset Milwaukee Bayview 82 to 81 last week, the fans charged the court and started kicking each other's asses. Several people, including four police officers were injured. Here's four minutes of mediocre quality video of the incident that the Milwaukee news stations have shown ad nauseum, like it's the Zapruder film or something:

The idea of fighting somebody because the team they cheer for lost to or beat the team you cheer for strikes me as incomprehensibly retarded. But in actuality, when you look at sports fans across the globe, that's basically the norm.

The Freakonomics Blog asks an interesting question: Why aren't US Sports fans more violent?

It's really a good question. We're probably the most violent country on Earth, but our sports fans seem far less violent than soccer hooligans across the globe. Stephen Dubner suggests some possible reasons:

1. Many soccer matches are more local affairs than U.S. sporting events, thereby attracting a lot of fans for both teams, who are more likely to mix it up than if 95% of the fans are rooting for the same team.

2. We have better security.

3. We drink less; many U.S. stadiums and arenas now cut off the sale of beer, e.g., before the end of the game.

4. Perhaps the audiences at U.S. sporting events don’t include the criminal element — the result, perhaps, of high ticket prices.

5. For years, there has been talk of how American sports, particularly football, are a proxy for war and true violence; maybe this is actually true.

I'd say the first one is probably the best bet. This high school brawl probably wouldn't have happened if one side's fans had dominated the stands. Bradley Tech and Bayview aren't too far away from each other and both teams are very good, which draws bigger high school crowds. That, coupled with the fact that both schools are full of a bunch of degenerates makes for a bad situation.

It's interesting to note that Milwaukee high schools and the country of Italy have reacted similarly.

Soccer in Italy to Resume, With Stadiums Vacant


Game brawl results in citations, strict attendance policy

That can't be good for revenue.


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    By Blogger Victor, at 10:22 AM  

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