The Devil's Advocate: In Defense of the Philadelphia Fanbase

This past Sunday night Pat Hickey, a Canadian sportswriter from Quebec, left the Wachovia Center after watching the Montreal Canadiens lose 6-0 to the Philadelphia Flyers, only to find his car covered in beer cans and his tires slashed. Sadly this is not an isolated event. A news broadcast team from CBC was vandalized by fans who ripped cords from their broadcast unit and poored beer over the control panel. These two incidents combined with the vandalism following the Phillies World Series victory in 2008 and the generally disgruntled nature of Eagles’ fans has led many to believe that The City of Brotherly Love may really be The City of Drunken Hooligans.

But I say nay, dear reader, nay. Philadelphians are not so wild and ruthless as you have been led to believe. Many have been extremely apologetic, e-mailing Hickey personally to tell him they’re sorry, invite him to dinner, or even invite him to come tailgating prior to Game 2. And the actions of Phillies fans are probably no worse than those of Bostonians in the wake of their historic victory (or as a great man once said, “a date which will live in infamy”). Besides, those who are not used to winning can easily become drunk on the fruits of victory. Let us not judge the whole based on the actions of the few, but rather let us see these incidents as errors in judgment on the part of a minority of people who simply happen to act out over and over and over again. The are not representative of the Philadelphia fanbase. They just happen to be the loudest part of it.

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