It beggars the mind and imagination to try to process what passes for brains in some humans. Were they born that way? Or is it some mind virus that descends without fanfare and then erupts in sporadic locations? Is the 'Youtube' social milieu driving it? We don't know. But the "knockout game" appears to perhaps have been set off by a combination of these factors.
In the case of the knockout game, the object is to suddenly coldcock a poor, forlorn soul just minding his own business and trying to get to his destination. Some retrograde, genetic defective uses a fist to lay waste to the hapless person with the intent of knocking him out cold, as in the case of this NJ incident,
The reprobates then scurry away -trying to walk normally - while likely hoping the victim (or one of his friends) doesn't come to and take out a Glock 9mm and begin firing. Of course, that is the inherent danger (apart from being lawless) of this stupid "game" - because one never knows: a) if the victim might be packing, and b) he might be packing hoping to be a 'victim' and unleash the power of his Glock - then claim "self defense". (After all, an oldster can be killed by such a knock out, say on his head hitting the pavement or from the damage of the bruising punches themselves.)
Now, another nasty phenomenon has evidently erupted in NFL stadiums that bears some similarity to its urban cousin. That is, punching out or stabbing fellow fans - often in the parking lots of NFL stadiums. After the December 12th Broncos-Chargers game in Denver, for example, following the Broncos' 27-20 loss, four fans got into it in the stadium parking lot. All Broncos' fans btw, but evidently one of them wasn't prepared to take the loss as lightly as the other three. He took out a knife and stabbed the three in their torsos, incepting emergencies in which all had to be rushed to an area hospital.
The upshot is the actual culprit received no punishment, no legal sanction because none of the victims or any incidental bystanders could make a positive ID. The light was too dim, and they couldn't be certain what the perp looked like. The three victims, however, have all received notices from the Broncos' Stadium Authority that they were barred from attending any Broncos' games for the next year. That also extended to no tailgating in the stadium parking lot. Of course, all the victims are incensed that they are being punished - just for being victims. (The Broncos' brain trust probably believes it 'takes two to tango' and the victims were as responsible as the perp for the violence, which claim may or may not be correct.)
Meanwhile, yesterday afternoon in the Broncos' stadium parking lot dozens of Charger fans happily tailgated and there were no incidents, e.g.
Well, of course this transpired in daytime and the fans were assembled in a large group. Little chance of Bronco fans beating on them. (A phenomenon in many NFL stadiums, from Seattle to Philly, forcing police to adopt an entrapment strategy, i.e donning the jerseys of enemy teams in efforts to elicit reprisals. Philly and Seattle have evidently been two of the most violence prone places.)
Meanwhile, after the game and in the parking lot of a football bar in San Diego, upset Chargers' fans (after they lost 24-17) set upon a hapless Broncos' fan - his orange jersey having the effect of a red flag waved in front of bulls, i.e.
This prompts the question: Is this sort of behavior really necessary? Is it really appropriate to fans of America's premier game? Or has NFL fandom degenerated to the point of being manic barbarians- little different from knockout gamers- and unable to tolerate the sight of enemy gear, jerseys, caps anywhere? Of course, not all fans behave in this savage fashion, but enough do to call attention to the behavior.
In the "old" days, of course, likely before most of today's fans were even born, there were no team jerseys or emblematic NFL gear to betray the identity of fans. NFL fans often showed up in suit coats and ties (for the males) and spiffy dresses for the females, with appropriate outer gear. While this may seem dull to today's fans, you never saw fights break out, beatings unleashed or curses hurled at opponent fans, such as wifey and her fellow Ravens' fans experienced after a game in Denver some 7 years ago. (She said the endless curses - and this was after a Denver 'W' - were so vile she couldn't repeat them.)
Let's hope fans grow up as we approach the final two games - the Conference championships - this coming Sunday. At the same time, I dispute that Seattle's solution (allowing no tickets to be sold to 49'er fans) is the answer. Every conference opponents' fans ought to see tickets available to attend what may be the last game for their team.