They Might as Well Ban Losing
After violence marred a weekend preseason game against the archrival Oakland Raiders, the San Francisco 49ers on Monday moved to strengthen security at home games, including banning tailgating after kickoff and warning fans that rowdy behavior won’t be tolerated.
Although I count myself a 49ers fan, my brother is a Raiders fan and we’ve generally gone to at least one home game for each team every season. The study in contrasts of the two fan bases is wonderful and right before my brother and I end up fall down drunk (usually about 11am), we have a good laugh at the differences. In a nutshell, most of the Raiders fan base appears to have been paroled the night before so they could attend the game, whereas most of the 49ers fan base appears to have flown down from their Tahoe winter home to attend the game. Or something like that.
But to be clear, I don’t think that means the Raiders fans caused this. If anything I’ve probably felt more safe in the Raiders parking lot than 49ers (but mostly because I might fall into one of the lakes that are a feature of Candlestick winters). And in fact, I attended a regular season 49ers/Raiders game a few years ago that was played in Oakland and that the 49ers won in overtime. The only thing that happened to me because of my 49ers jacket and hat is that the guy in the parking lot selling t-shirts of a 49er fan giving a Raiders fan a blow job looked at me disparagingly.
The violence at this game was not fan on fan, it was fans on ownership — it was just a reality that ownership wasn’t represented in the cheap seats. Let’s face it, neither the Yorks nor Al Davis have seemed to care one iota about fielding a competitive team in years and this violence is the collective frustration of both fan bases saying enough is enough.
The ownership groups can take all the preventative measures they want, it won’t matter until they start preventing their sucky teams from losing. And the only reason we tailgate in the parking lot after the game starts is because it’s less depressing than going inside the stadium. Sorry guys, but this one is on you.