Does buying a ticket to a sporting event give the purchaser free-reign to be verbally abusive?
In this case, it could be toward a fan of the other team, players or officials.
It’s typically not permitted in the workplace. Or in a public meeting.
According to the National Officiating Survey of more than 17,000 high school officials conducted by the National Association of Sports Officials, 86.98 percent of the respondents said they had suffered verbal abuse in their officiating roles.
As a high school sports official, I can tell you that there are some schools with outstanding reputations for sportsmanship and others who are deplorable – particularly in the context of the school being an educational institution -- a place for students to learn!
No surprise here. The survey indicates that the major contributors to poor sportsmanship are parents (39.26 percent) and coaches (29.46 percent). How embarrassing.
Just as discouraging, nearly 57 percent said sportsmanship is getting worse.
Parents and coaches set the example and cast the image and reputation of their family, team and school just as corporate executives do for their company.
It’s time to change the downward trend by stepping up, being a good role model and doing the right thing. There is no place for verbally-abusive sports fans. Your children and students are watching.