That’s the hashtag going viral on KC Twitter as of this writing. People in Kansas City love that story, and the people involved with making it happen love it even more. I can be “that guy” and argue the exploitation of a human being as a PR stunt, but honestly, I don’t give a shit.
What I do give a shit about is everyone trying to get him back to Kansas City to watch the World Series. Why? Because there are thousands more deserving Royals fans in Kansas City who also want to go. And they won’t. Because they’re poor.
At press time, the cheapest ticket to Game 1 on StubHub is almost $700, and that’s for standing room only tickets. Even if you were one of the lucky ones to win the ticket lottery, face value was over $100. That’s a lot of cash for one ticket with no seat. Unless you make at least six-figures a year or plan on sacrificing your kids’ college fund, tickets are unattainable once it sells out. Those who had the opportunity to buy face value tickets still had to reach deep into their wallet, many of whom make less than $50,000 a year.
Popular sporting events favor the rich and isolates lower-income fans.
Sports teams, and therefore sporting events, are not like fast cars, designer clothing and exotic vacations, i.e. luxury goods that establish wealth and success. Those items’ value, both monetarily and socially, are based on their unavailability and the private company’s discretion. Conversely, sports teams are designed to be for EVERYBODY. Often times, they are put in place by local governments via taxes. Sure, the political motivation is revenue for the city. Sociologically, the teams give the city an identity and in many ways brings the city together. Young and old, rich and poor, liberals and conservatives, black, white, Hispanic, whatever. None of those things matter inside a stadium. Unfortunately, only one of those groups has access to the most important games, which in turn are important for the city itself.
I realize that everyone thinks they deserve to go. We are all unique individuals who feel we’re bigger fans than most people. Just because someone is rich does not mean they don’t deserve to go. Conversely, thousands of fans that have been supporting the Royals for decades will never get the opportunity.
It’s called capitalism and the free market, Ty. If you can charge $1,000 a ticket, then do it.
Fuck that. Every year, the winning manager and players give all the credit to the fans. THEY are the ones that deserve the win. THEY are the ones that made it happen. However, the only fans who are greatly rewarded at the end are the rich. If the real fans really matter, you will find a way to get as many of them as possible to see the Big Game.
And I have that solution.
To start, we wipe the slate clean in the postseason. Season ticket holders do not get first dibs. Sorry, but I’m equaling the playing field for everyone. At the top of the list are all the Jackson County taxpayers. They are the ones that paid for the entire fucking thing. Ironically, Johnson County taxpayers are the ones reaping the rewards. The poor pays for the rich to have fun. Since Jackson County includes some of the poorest areas in KC, these ticket prices should be adjusted according to income.
Next at bat is everyone in the metro area…who are Royals fans. There are two ways to do this: 1) quick, relatively simple quiz about this year’s team (questions timed and randomized per person to prevent looking up answers and remembering questions for other entrants) OR 2) proof of purchase of five or more Royals games this year. This ensures the real fans, the one David Glass referred to but (many) were not present, get a chance. It also prevents that cunt with the Marlins jacket from coming back. That motherfucker.
After that, it’s a ticket grab for everyone and Major League Baseball can charge as much as they want. I may sound bitter, because I am, but with the widening socioeconomic gap, it’s time for the poors to reclaim what is also rightfully theirs.
Sports tend to be popular among poorer communities, because it’s one of the few things in the city they can get pleasure from. Sports allow the underprivileged to celebrate something. When you think of a sports fanatic, you don’t think of a white-collared professional. Rather, you think of the working class people who just want a beer and a game after a shitty day at work. When those people’s tax dollars are going to something they cannot afford to participate in, we have a serious problem.