I think almost everybody would agree that fan violence is unacceptable. It just doesn’t make sense.
This is our job, the means by which we provide for our families, and we don’t take it that far. Obviously we have more than we need in this game. We make a lot of money. But still, this is how we provide for our families. This is how my children will go to college. This is how my house gets paid for. For us, our performance on the field is a serious issue. Salary is a performance-based issue. Our income depends on how well we play. There’s a lot of pressure on us to do what we do, and to do it well.
And with everything we have at stake, we don’t even take a rivalry off the field. After the game, we’re not fighting anybody. We don’t walk out of the clubhouse, see an opposing team’s fan, and want to fight them. We don’t allow our emotions to take over like that.
The rivalry dies at the end of the game. The rivalry ends when the last out is made. Then we go home, where we are dads, and husbands, and boyfriends, and fiancés. After the game is over, we have to be somebody else. So we can’t take that emotion home.
So why should the fans want to take that emotion home? When your team wins, that’s your bragging rights. If you have a Giants jersey on, and the Dodgers lose, and you’re walking next to a Dodgers fan, they know your team won. You don’t need to rub it in. You don’t need to stir up anger and get everybody mad and then start fighting. A win or loss by your team doesn’t affect your family. So that kind of anger makes no sense to me.
We need fans. We need the electricity. We need them to be a part of us. We need the fans to play this game. We need that kind of support. But at the end of the game, the fans need to stop, just like we need to stop. Even when we’re frustrated, we don’t want to take it out on anybody, and we don’t want the fans to take it out on anybody. There’s just no point in that.
And I know the fans know this. It was amazing how people loved Bryan Stow’s family. They don’t even know them. But fans raised something like sixty thousand dollars in LA. They raised money in San Francisco. A couple of teammates gave money to the family.
It was really exciting to see the fans come together to do what they did. I mean, the love and support that the Stow family received from Giants and Dodgers fans has been very, very appropriate. And I think that it made an impact. I’m sure there’s some bitterness that can reside in that family over this issue. There could be some real tough issues there. And to see fans come together and try to help will hopefully help eliminate some of that unforgiveness, and the bitterness they might feel.
It was a time to bring peace where there was no peace. It was a time to make an effort, to help where we could. The fans were awesome. Next time, I’ll share some thoughts about what this means for believers. I’ll talk about how we should always be ready to bring peace. See you Tuesday.