Posted by: chlost | January 25, 2010

Fans

I live in a place which has recently been inundated with purple.  People in stores and public service counters wore purple.  Most of these were wearing purple jerseys with numbers on the front and back, with a name printed above the number on the back.  In other words, I live in the land of Vikings fans.

In case you are not a fan, the Vikings are a football team.  A professional football team.  The players on the team make hundreds of thousands of dollars (each) per year.  The team was in a playoff game, so each player was earning a bonus for progressing that far in the championship run.  The owners, the television executives, the ad agencies, the sponsors, and the other various “collateral” individuals are making millions of dollars from this team.  This means that even if they are not personally on the football field, sacrificing their body to advance a brown ball that is pointy on both ends, they are making a LOT of money. 

My point is that this is a corporation.  It is a business.  It is a big money business.  There are hundreds of thousands of people who wear clothing, paint their faces, have supportive parties, and plan their week around this business.

Is there any other business which can claim such loyalty?  I suppose there are fans of Pepsi or Coke,  Macs or PCs,  even Nike or New Balance who feel very strongly about their favorites.  It used to be that people had loyalty to an automobile brand-my father always drove Chryslers and hated GMs.  I don’t think many people feel much about car brands these days.  but there were thousands of fans cheering for their team, so loudly in New Orleans that the Vikings players had to wear ear plugs.  The partying after the Saints’ win rivaled any Mardi Gras celebration.  There were hundreds of thousands of fans watching on television.

Could we ever hope to have the same type of fanaticism for a social issue that would compare to the fan support of a football team?  Yay for healthcare reform! Go get ’em for human rights!  Fight, Fight for GLBT rights!  I am so tired of it.  I hear people-even people whom I love-talk about “we are playing the NFC championship game” or “we lost the ball just seconds before the end of the game”.  WE??????  We can feel a part of this football team, but not of this country? I want people to care at least as much about children being abandoned as they do about a rich man playing football.

I know-I am a cynic, and a grump.  I don’t have a sense of humor or fun.  I admit it, I don’t.  With the recent Supreme Court ruling, and knowing that the football corporations will now buy themselves the votes they need for a tax-funded stadium, as well as anything else the person/corporation desires, it is almost more than I can handle.

Would someone please cheer for me?

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