Is It Really “Just A Game”?

Yesterday evening, I happened to be one of the many disappointed 49ers fans alternately cheering and wincing throughout yesterday’s Championship Football game.  (I am normally a Bears fan, however since they decided to forget how to play this year – again – I chose to support the team based out of the state in which I was born.)  I am not a die-hard fan of football – I can not give a break-down of the game or provide a decent play-by-play without conducting a copious amount of research ahead of time.  I can tell you that up to the fourth quarter, the overall gameplay was, for the most part, entertaining.  There was a good chance that the 49ers could have clinched a victory, had it not been for the comedy of errors that was Kyle Williams’ performance during the fourth quarter.  His two fumbles (along with the rather shoddy performance of the 49ers’ offense) gave the Giants both an additional chance to score a touchdown (which they took advantage of) and the opportunity to make the field goal that gave the Giants victory in overtime.

Williams has since been receiving death threats via Twitter from various upset fans.  While I am certainly not thrilled with his overall performance during yesterday’s game, “death threats” against him – and his family – are taking it a bit far.  What does this say about our “culture of sports”, asks Kyle’s father Kenny Williams, the general manager of the Chicago White Sox (ESPNchicago.com)?  Last I checked, football is just a game, right?  I don’t know what saddens me more: the fact that a football player is receiving death threats for a few bad plays, or that in our society, this sort of response is not only unsurprising but almost expected.  What does this say about us, indeed.