Last week wasn't Fenway Park's finest. You probably know all about these events by now, but if not: the week started with a Boston Red Sox fan shouting a racist slur at Baltimore Orioles center fielder Adam Jones. Another fan then was banned later in the week after they used a slur -- this time toward a fellow fan.
You might wonder just how the Red Sox intend to uphold the ban, given the difficulty in trying to keep out one individual. Fortunately, Sports Illustrated's Chris Chavez provided the answer:
"We informed this person verbally and in writing, and we've also flagged their credit card from being able to purchase tickets from the organization moving forward," Red Sox spokeswoman Zineb Curran told WEEI. "Key security personnel are aware of who the individual is. What we're not doing is posting this person's picture and name at every gate. That's not something we're doing. We know this isn't a perfect or infallible system. And we recognize that enforcing it will be a difficult thing to do. But if the person is willing to take a risk and come back to the ballpark, there are actions that can be taken if they're caught."
Chavez notes that sporting events could eventually turn to facial recognition technology like that employed in casinos. For now, however, the methods are a little more old-school and luck dependent. (Remember the beer-tossing Toronto Blue Jays fan from last October?) That means there are loopholes in the system, but, with any luck, perhaps the heightened attention on such incidents will lead to improved behavior across the board.
Or maybe we'll all just strive to be better humans, who don't need to be reminded why it's wrong to be hateful toward others.