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Stay Classy, Chicago

By Benjy Lipsman in News on Jan 25, 2007 3:11PM

Come on, Chicago -- we know you're better than this. While your signs and banner should show support for your team, and maybe strike some fear in the opponent there are certainly limits to how far to go. You don't insult their mother. You don't question their sexuality. And you most certainly don't compare the game to a natural disaster that nearly wiped their city off the Earth.

2007_01_sports_bears_fan_poster.jpgYet one Bears fan's thought it would be a good idea to bring a sign that read, "Bears Finishing what Katrina Started" to Soldier Field for Sunday's NFC Championship game.

From far and wide, this sign has provoked outrage. On MSNBC's Countdown, Keith Olbermann included the sign's creator on his list of candidates for "Worst Person in the World" the other night.

Locally, the Trib's Eric Zorn – who at first assumed the poster’s existence must be an urban legend -- questioned not only the sign's creator but also those other fans who witnessed the vileness yet did nothing about it. He rightfully suggests that the offending fan be asked to issue a public apology.

Here in the Chicagoist world headquarters, we received an email from reader Gavin Robinson, a Louisiana native who moved to Chicago 10 months ago. Having been personally touched by the tragedy of Hurricane Katrina, he did not find any humor in the way some Bears fans acted towards the Saints and their fans:

[I]t was apparently funny for one fan to bring a sign to the game that read: "da bears: finishing what katrina started." not funny. it was apparently funny for the bar i was in to play "rock you like a hurricane," when the bears scored. not funny. on facebook, there are groups upon offensive groups about the bears = katrina. not. funny. at. all.

Gavin, we're right there with ya! There truly are some classless fans in this town. Whether these incidents surrounding the Saints game, or the hair pulling with some Astros player's wife during the World Series, or the fans attacking players and coaches on the baseball fields, these are simply reprehensible acts. And those who witness these acts without stopping them are just as guilty.

Chicago, it's time we shape up. We've heard, on a number of occasions, how people compliment Chicago by saying that it's like New York, only "cleaner and friendlier." But if we keep acting like this, then cleanliness is all we'll have going for us. Is that really the notoriety you want to have to live up to across the land? We don't either!

Image via MSNBC