A little letter to my friends who root for the Steelers …..

January 15, 2011 |

These following paragraphs will come as no surprise to my 993 Facebook Friends, or to anyone who listens to my daily sports talk show. But, I am offering some insight into my mode of thinking – from both the heart and mind …..

I have made absolutely no secret of my contempt for Baltimoreans (or those who live in this metro area) who call themselves fans of the Pittsburgh Steelers. My opinion is unwavering and strong as ever. But, I think it’s also one of reason …..

If you live in this area, but you’re from Pittsburgh or your family is deeply rooted in Western Pennsylvania, I absolutely understand your support of the Steelers franchise – and I applaud it. My good friend, Leah Griffin, grew up watching the Steelers with her grandfather; family traditions are the backbone of our society.

And, my buddy, Chris Carroll, is from Pittsburgh. Good for you, my man. I always enjoy our bantering …..

But, if you’re one of the THOUSANDS of others who hails from this area, and invests nothing more than your “personal choice” in rooting for the Steelers, I have a very distinct message to convey …..

SHAME ON YOU

If you rely on the worn out excuse of needing a team to support when the Colts left town, it’s falling on deaf ears with this guy. You changed allegiances once, why not do it, again? Heck, I have more respect for the Baltimoreans who still root for the Colts.

Don’t feed me the assertion that the Ravens (Browns) deserted Cleveland, in the same spirit achieved by the Colts, when they packed up the Mayflower vans. It’s not even close. One team was BROKE and left the team name and colors on the floor, as it exited thru the front door …. while the other team snuck out the rear, while lying to an entire city.

Since their arrival, in Baltimore, the Ravens have made a tremendous impact on this city and its surrounding communities. From an economic perspective, the franchise generates MILLIONS OF DOLLARS for local businesses and governments.

And, the Ravens contribution to local employment, both directly and indirectly, is virtually immeasurable. Thousands of jobs exist, because of Baltimore’s presence in the National Football League.

Let me guess …. you pay plenty of taxes and support the city with your own personal and professional contributions, right? If that’s the essence of the typical “Baltimore Steelers” fan and their defense for supporting an organization that impacts ANOTHER city, I’m far from impressed.

Where would Baltimore be without the Ravens? More importantly, BALTIMORE STEELERS FAN, where would you be without the Ravens? Yeah, you would still have “YOUR” team, in Pittsburgh, but you would suffer economically – just like the rest of us.

After all, the equivalent of funds generated from the Ravens existence would need to come from somewhere – or programs would be cut …. or some businesses would not be here … or some people wouldn’t have their jobs.

How about the civic pride?

It’s heartwarming to drive around this city, on a cold January night, and see buildings bathed in purple spotlights. The hundreds of organized fan clubs, to include Ravens Roosts and Nests have such a positive effect in the lives of this area’s residents – and each club has a BAR or TAVERN it supports.

You can’t walk around a local shopping mall, grocery store or entertainment event without seeing people wearing Ravens jackets, shirts and hats. It feels so damn good to see such a unified fan base.

Heck, this city celebrates PURPLE FRIDAY !!!! An entire day of the week is dedicated to the populous joining together for a cause. That’s special stuff – and it wouldn’t exist without the Ravens.

Do you listen to sports talk radio, Mr. or Mrs. Baltimore Steelers fan? Let me guess, you’re tuned into KDKA, in Pittsburgh? Before the Ravens existed, Baltimore did not have any radio stations dedicated solely to sports.

Today, three such stations exist – and the Orioles are not paying the bills !!!!

This afternoon’s game will likely be the typical, closely-contested battle expected of the Ravens and Steelers. And, the Steelers may very well win. If they do, the Ravens will call it a season and the countdown to training camp begins.

But, if the Ravens win …. this city will become one big PURPLE PARTY. And, Baltimore Steelers fans will have nowhere to hide from it. That’s the truth …..

Regardless of today’s outcome, Baltimore’s Steelers fans can rest assured of their continued “free ride” in enjoying a better community and local society, thanks to the Ravens.

After all, your shame hasn’t stopped such indulgence, yet.

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