Don’t mock others for their interests

Griffin Hunsaker column

I like sports.

It is fun for me to be emotionally invested in the success and failure of a sports team.

I’ve noticed, especially lately, people who feel the need to point out how stupid I am for following sports.

“Yay! Put the ball in the thing!”

“Woo! That guy hit the other guy!”

Sarcastic remarks like these are meant to show how ridiculous sports fans are for cheering on a bunch of grown men playing a game.

Most sports fans know this. We know that it is kind of weird to lose our minds over one guy throwing a ball to another guy.

We know how crazy it seems to scream at the top of our lungs when a guy hits a ball really hard with a stick.

But we’re OK with that.

It is entertaining to millions of people all over the world.

Any form of entertainment boiled down to its most basic principles will sound ridiculous.

“Can you believe people actually spend hours reading word after word about fictional characters!”

“Isn’t it crazy that it costs $10 to watch light reflect off a screen for 90 minutes?”

We should be able to enjoy what we enjoy without being mocked for it.

And sports fans aren’t the only people at the business end of this mockery.

Pop culture, fashion, TV — especially reality TV — and social media all receive this criticism.

When much of the Internet was going crazy over a blue-black/white-gold dress, the fun police came along to try and make us all feel guilty about our reactions.

“There’s a conflict in the Middle East and riots about race relations, and we’re arguing over a stupid picture of a dress?”

Apparently we’re not allowed to have fun when serious stuff is happening.

Thousands of people find it fun to keep up to date on who Taylor Swift has been dating — and breaking up with — lately.

Some of us can’t wait until Monday to watch Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal back-to-back.

Nobody is forcing us to follow these things. If you don’t like TV, don’t watch it.

The main reason people mock various forms of entertainment is because they believe these things, and the people who make them possible, contribute nothing to society. They don’t matter.

And if you think they don’t matter, then you’re right.

Sports matters to me because I make it matter.

It’s the same reason music, literature and visual arts matter so much to so many people.

Sports matters to me because I know I can meet a complete stranger and we can celebrate together like we’re best friends because the hockey team we’re both cheering for just scored.

It matters to me because I’ve spent an awesome week with two of my brothers following a baseball team from Atlanta to Miami to Philadelphia.

You may think it’s dumb, but sports matter a lot. Just because something seems pointless to you doesn’t mean it has no point.

So, let people care about what or whom they want to care about, whether that be Kim Kardashian, Calvin Klein or the Cleveland Cavaliers.

'Don’t mock others for their interests' has 1 comment

  1. May 20, 2015 @ 6:43 am Daniel

    I’m not sure what would have inspired this article. As far as I’m aware, I’ve never heard of anyone make fun of another for liking sports. I, personally, don’t like most sports, as I just don’t like competition in the form of physical performance. Every sport requires skill, endurance, strength, coordination, and/or dexterity. Each of these things are physical competitions, which I’ve disliked maybe only because I’m not that great with any of that. I don’t mind competing against myself and getting PR in something, I just don’t like competing with others, mostly. When it comes to competing with others, I enjoy mind competitions with board games, card games, and others.

    Anyways, although it is not about something I particularly have an interest in, the general idea behind what you’re saying is something I definitely support. Although I dislike sports, I would congratulate you on your devotion to something that interests you and captivates your attention to improve yourself in some way.

    I would say my interest is one that is more often criticized for grown men being into. I’m a brony, an older fan of My Little Pony:Friendship is Magic. Sports are something I’ve never heard anyone ever really have problems with for grown men to be into. Imagine a cartoon that traditionally was associated with being with young girls! Sports are usually considered manly, though I suppose your article put a new perspective on them, since there must have been people you ran into who did mock you for liking sports otherwise you would not have provided examples. Being a brony, I think, gets more flack though. Being someone who would constantly have ridicule for an interest, I definitely agree with the idea behind your article about letting people like what they like. There’s much more than the “simple” and obvious things. Just as you said about the sport not only being a man hitting a ball or whatever, there’s more behind every interest. Otherwise, there would be no interests people have! Similarly, there’s more to MLP:FIM than just um, colorful pony cartoons associated with little girls. Heck, since there are more bronies worldwide than Mormons now there must be something else to it lol.

    -Daniel, leader of the brony meetup group here at BYU-I


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