Today is the age of social media without consequences it appears. No longer do you ever have to answer for the things that you would have only ten years ago said behind closed doors. Apparently, fans and even other drivers making death threats towards another driver is becoming the norm.
Hearing about bullying in schools and on the playground has always been something that happened. Whether it was when I was growing up 30 years, or even now. The issue now is that you can sit behind a keyboard and talk smack. The same type of smack that 95% of the general public would never have the nerve to say in person. That type of behavior is taken to an entirely new level when you threaten someone’s life though.
When is it “going too far?” seems to be the question that a lot of people need to start asking themselves. Fact is, if you must ask yourself if that comment or even threat went over the line or went too far, then chances are it went too far. When you threaten another person’s life, their family, their business, you have in essence gone too far. What on God’s Green Earth makes you think to yourself as a fan that it is ok to send threatening messages because one driver called out another? What makes you think to yourself that it is ok to threaten another driver’s life because they were in a crash against “your guy”?
Too often in the technology age, I see people that take it not only one step too far, but they leap over that line so far you can’t even tell where the line was supposed to be. Now I am not a hypocrite, I will be the first to admit that I have gone too far a time or two, but certainly not to the point of threatening another person’s life over something a joke.
When Brian Davis and Justin Shearer got tangled up on that TV show a few seasons ago, I sat back and watched the absolute rage that was pointed at Brian over the accident. We are talking about a crash that happened on the street in one of the most dangerous ways to race. The threats that were tossed Brian’s way were nothing short of shocking and disgusting. Taken too far by some would be a serious understatement in that situation.
Fast forward a couple years, and I see it on a daily basis again. Whether it be street racers calling each other out, Street Outlaws, calling each other out, class racers vs street outlaw racers, grudge racers, etc. For the most part it appears as though it’s the fans of drivers that take it upon themselves to make threats. Do you really think that a driver getting called out by another driver warrants a message from you threatening their life? Where do you think you have the right to do that? Would you have the gall to say those same words face to face?
I understand that the sport of drag racing has some of the most passionate fans on the planet. I also understand that TV celebrities have some of the most passionate fans on earth. I can’t think of a legitimate driver, no matter what form of drag racing they are involved in that would find it acceptable for their fans to physically threaten another driver. These men and women can speak for themselves. I don’t see where you getting involved, and creating a hostile environment that could land you in jail is an acceptable idea.
You can cheer for your driver, you can buy your drivers apparel, you can be passionate about your driver, but you damn sure should not be threatening their opponent or potential opponent with bodily harm because your driver got called out. I don’t think they have Livestream, YouTube, or Discovery channel in jail most of the time.
So next time you get so angry that your driver lost, wrecked, got called out, etc. make an attempt to find a better outlet for that aggression than directing it towards another driver or team. You don’t have to like the person in the other lane, the person on the other side of the monitor, or even the people that report on this, but always remember that there is a line that shouldn’t be crossed, and too many times it is getting crossed. Take your petty anger and go find something productive to do.