National Columnist

Hate Mail: NFL booze ban? Let's drink to that


Updated Sept. 1

OK, folks, here's how we do things around here. I spend hours on stories -- thinking, researching, writing, editing. And when readers spend 30 seconds deciding they know my motives, it ticks me off. Because nobody knows how I think. You can't read my mind -- I'm insane.

Yet lots of you tried. I lamented the alcohol-fueled violence at stadiums in a reasonable, nuanced, see-both-sides column -- and lots of you put on your Captain Obvious dunce cap and called me a liberal wimp.

Assume you know me? Fine. Hate Mail will assume to know you, too.

From: Matt

You sound like a man that's been castrated. What do liberals do best? A couple bad incidents happen and you're quick to ban things. And I didn't see where you wrote about the thousands of jobs that would be lost either. But you liberals think the government can create jobs so ...

Ignore the message, the facts and even the innocent bloodshed -- let's just attack the messenger, and assume you know how I vote in elections! Since you didn't like that story on drinking at stadiums, Matt, I assume you're an alcoholic. Good luck with that.

From: Harlan

You must be a liberal.

You must be a drunk.

From: Vinny O.

If you're trolling for feedback, congrats! However, if this is actually your point of view on this subject, then [expletive] you, mother [expletive]. I will break a bottle of beer over that dip-[expletive] forehead of yours, allowing all of the liberal smegma to leak out of your cranium.

You probably drink because you have no friends.

From: Scott M.

This violence is more a result of the shifting demographics than the alcohol. Look carefully at the picture at the top of your article. What do you see?

I see people. I see men. I see men with dark hair. I see men ... who ... aren't ... WASP's. Oh. Now I see your point about "shifting demographics." What I don't see is your white sheet. But I bet it's somewhere.

From: Lyle Ploger

Look at the pictures -- people from south of the border. California has the most gang thugs in the country. Don't blame the beer sales, blame the thug culture.

Your white sheet is in plain view, Lyle.

From: Greg Stewart

If you look at the latest incidents at pro games, it seems like a better idea to ban Mexicans.

And you're the Grand Wizard.

From: Tim H.

This is the kind of article that causes the country to be in the state we're in. One black steals and all blacks are thieves? One white said the n-word and all whites are racists? This is why people hate the liberal media. I don't think you have the guts to respond.

Everyone, please notice that Tim invented two people: a black thief and a white racist. Which do you think was his self-portrait?

From: Rich Polhamus

Those of you who rush to ban things remind me of Nazis. Grow a set of [testicles]. Millions of people drink and enjoy games without incident. Turn in your Man Card and put on a dress, Gloria!

Your argument method is Caveman 101. And your name is an anagram for "lumpish roach."

From: Ron

If someone trips down stairs at a ballgame, would you say we should make all stadiums flat? Stop being a reactionary little girl.

And there's another reference equating weakness with girls. You drunks sure are a racist, sexist bunch.

From: Cliffjumper17

You're pathetic for peddling fear-mongering. You do realize millions of people have attended sports venues with alcohol this year, right? If I see you at a game, I will go out of my way to ruin your experience.

Oh please try that. Pretty please?

From: Brad

You're a hack. Give it up already man. Alcohol doesn't make regular people violent. It makes violent people violent.

Thank you for supporting my point so concisely. That was your goal, right?

From: Brandon Burt

Though alcohol does screw up your judgment of things, the people who fired the shots should be the ones blamed. Just because three people mess up doesn't mean 75,000 have to pay for it. This isn't a high school football game -- it's the NFL.

I picture you in a standing position, hands on knees, peering into the computer while your polyester coaches shorts try not to burst.

From: Brian

People get hurt with alcohol every day. Therefore, you should support a total ban of alcohol -- closing bars, liquor stores, etc. If we get rid of one problem area, then we should get rid of all potentially dangerous areas. Right?

Ah, preposterous hyperbole to prove a point. Two can play at that game, Brian: Let's remove all laws against personal liberties, since this is America and we're free to make choices. No laws against drinking, smoking or drugs. Hell, let's give cocaine away in schools. Teach kids at an early age how to control it. Right?

From: G. Gershwin

If you really care about these THREE injured people, you should write an article to outlaw sports. That article wouldn't be any stupider than this article.

Great point. Why should I care about those THREE people? Probably had it coming, stupid idiots, thinking they can go to a game and not leave in an ambulance ...

From: Greg Niss

Interesting ploy to get your click rates higher.


From: Scot P.

When we've reached the point where you can't attend a game without a little bit of doubt in the back of your mind as you enter a bathroom or walk through the parking lot, changes need to be made. I look at my 1-year-old son and wonder if I'll EVER take him to a game when he gets old enough, simply because I can't trust drunk fans not to turn into animals.

I got lots of these emails, people. Lots.

From: Robert Greene

I was at the 49ers game with my 9-year-old son. Luckily we weren't too close to the fights, but it seemed like mayhem even in the concession areas and for sure in the parking lot. Drinking is a huge problem at the NFL -- but it's really the tailgating where it's a frat house on steroids.


From: Blaine

I've been an NFL season ticket-holder for 18 years, an alcoholic in recovery who took my last drink 19 years ago, and I work as a prosecutor -- where 75 percent of my cases are alcohol-driven. Budweiser pays my mortgage. Anyway, the unholy marriage of alcohol and pro sports will cause these same results over and over again, but it's never going to change so long as liquor drives profits in these stadiums.


From: Tacklebox

It's about time someone highlighted the drunks at a game. I will NOT take my family to a sport that allows people to drink. I don't know what it is about sports and booze that brings out the bravado in people, but I want no part of it.

These are your peers, folks.

From: P. Norton

I'm the founder and executive director of a national nonprofit organization called FACE. For 23 years we've been working on this and similar issues and regardless of the cost and the carnage, it's ALL ABOUT THE MONEY! It doesn't matter whether it's the NFL, college and university campuses, or the PAC funding that shuts down alcohol policy that is designed to protect health, safety and well-being of the public. Thank you for your clarity, honesty and passion.

Goodness. Thank you.

From: Jay Jay Swanson

You are a FOOL!!! It's the same tired argument made by gun-control advocates. Forget the social problems in this country that we refuse to address, let's blame guns and not the gangbangers out there shooting each other! Why do gang members kill each other? Is it because we have Second Amendment rights in this country? Punish gun owners because criminals use guns to commit crimes! I can't tell you how much of a jackass you really are!!

I'm so glad someone like you can walk into Wal-Mart and purchase a deadly weapon.

From: Andy

Dude -- please -- change your profile picture. You look ridiculous.

Wrong. I look serious, smart, handsome and confident. I look like sex on a stick, is what I look like. Ask your wife. She'll tell you.

From: Jones

Tell your CBS bosses to ban all alcohol advertising or you will quit -- and then I will respect your opinion.

Well, you see Jones, people aren't leaving my columns and going straight to the emergency room. So I'm not sure what your point is.

From: Ernie

I get your opinion to ban drinking, but I'm tired of losing more liberties! Are there not laws against public intoxication, assault, etc? Maybe strengthen them? Why must the majority be penalized for the few? Paraphrasing, working from memory, Benjamin Franklin: "Those that trade liberty for security soon have neither."

And in the words of Gregg Doyel, "Those that run into the wrong drunk at an NFL game may leave with a cap in their ass."

Gregg Doyel is a columnist for He covered the ACC for the Charlotte Observer, the Marlins for the Miami Herald, and Brooksville (Fla.) Hernando for the Tampa Tribune. He was 4-0 (3 KO's!) as an amateur boxer, and volunteers for the ALS Association. Follow Gregg Doyel on Twitter.

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