Tuesday, November 20, 2007

NY Jets Fans: Desperate to Score, or At Least See What Women's Breasts Look Like

What an appalling story. Oh, I'm quite familiar with the notion of people drinking and getting wild at football games: after all, I graduated from the University of Florida. (Although lately, that place is arguably more famous for Tasing students who mouth off at speaking events, and most recently, we learn, for shelling out $40,000--that's about $100 Canadian for you readers in the Great White North, unless the exchange rate has shifted even further southward since I last checked--to a disgraced ex-Attorney General for the privilege of having him bring Federal-caliber slime to that which is already a remarkably sleazy swamp.)

This, however, is yet another example of institutionalized misogyny at its most bald-faced: an entire section of the New York Jets' stadium--Gate D--would seem, these days, to be a de facto Girls Gone Wild audition, with raucous male fans using language that underscores the points Melissa made earlier today. Meanwhile, the team's security guards stand around, doing little if anything to put a stop to the situation, just smoking their cigarettes and detaining (and confiscating tape recorders from) any reporters who dare to ask questions about the outrage:

At halftime of the Jets’ home game against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday, several hundred men lined one of Giants Stadium’s two pedestrian ramps at Gate D. Three deep in some areas, they whistled and jumped up and down. Then they began an obscenity-laced chant, demanding that the few women in the gathering expose their breasts.

When one woman appeared to be on the verge of obliging, the hooting and hollering intensified. But then she walked away, and plastic beer bottles and spit went flying. Boos swept through the crowd of unsatisfied men.

Marco Hoffner, an 18-year-old from Lacey Township, N.J., was expecting to see more. Not from the Jets — they pulled off a big upset over the Steelers. He wanted more from the alternative halftime show that, according to many fans, has been a staple at Jets home games for years.

“Very disappointed, because we’re used to seeing a lot,” Hoffner said.


Throughout halftime, about 10 security guards in yellow jackets stood near the bottom of the circular, multilevel ramp, located beyond the stadium’s concourse of concession stands and restrooms. One of the guards was smoking a cigarette; many fans do the same during halftime on the giant ramps, which are located at each corner of the stadium. Another guard later said they were not permitted to do anything about the chants at Gate D because of free speech laws. Yet when a reporter tried to interview two security guards after halftime, he was detained in a holding room, threatened with arrest and asked to hand over his tape recorder.


Such fan behavior is not uncommon at other sporting events in the United States, like Nascar races and the infield at the Kentucky Derby. There was even an infamous undressing in the National Football League’s marquee event: during the 2004 Super Bowl halftime show, a “wardrobe malfunction” exposed Janet Jackson’s right breast before a worldwide televised audience.

But the Gate D tradition at Giants Stadium apparently is unique to Jets games; the Gate D ramps are comparatively empty at Giants games. Perhaps forlorn Jets fans, who have rarely had a winning team to support, are seeking alternative entertainment on game days.

Ah, that explains it: those poor, disappointed little fans are just looking for some breastly comfort to soothe their tortured loser souls. Yeah, right.

(H/T Lisa in Baltimore)

Also at Shakesville.

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