Tales From The Cockpit: Respect Given is Respect Earned

Our Gamecocks men’s basketball team is heading to the Final Four.  The women’s team may soon follow them there.  Clemson won the National Championship in football.  Coastal Carolina won the National Championship in baseball.  It remains a GREAT time to be a college sports fan in the Palmetto State…but all I see on social media is childish bickering and petty d-baggery.

I can tweet it over and over(and I plan to continue to do so)…

Rise above.

Be the example.

Be better fans.


First off, spare me the “well they…” response.  That didn’t work when we got in trouble as kids and it won’t work now. Our society has fallen into a world in which we seem to think that two wrongs do in fact make a right…but they don’t.

The small group of moron fans coming out of Tiger territory are no different from the small number of toxic numb skulls that we have embarrassing our University day in and day out.  They are the minority, they are the problem. They should not represent the whole, nor should they have the power to turn pride into anger.

Rise above.

Be the example.

Be better fans.

It’s really not asking that much in the end.  It is as simple as living out lessons that were taught to us as children…or should have been.  Two wrongs do not make a right, that is a fact.  Stooping to the other person’s level is not justification for acting like a d-bag.

This is a sports rivalry.  Sports rivalries are fun, exciting, passionate…not war.  My father’s side of our family is a legitimate 50/50 split between Red Sox and Yankees fans.  I understand major sports rivalries.   I also can trash talk with my Uncle for 9-innings then sit at a table for dinner and be civil.

The people who lack the ability to rise above the nonsense are the people that lack the civility aspect of the rivalry.

You are not cool or tough for being a jerk on Twitter.  You aren’t a better fan for being petty in a sports conversation and taking shots at your supposed friends because they cheer for your rival.  You’re really just a jerk…and nobody likes the jerk.

Rise above.

Be the example.

Be better fans.

Here we sit, just one short work week away from watching Frank Martin and our boys take the hardwood in the Final Four for the first time in program history.  I for one am far too ecstatic about this to even hear any noise from our Orange brethren…in fact, I’ve literally received nothing but congratulations from them on social media.

Because respect given is respect earned.

When Clemson shocked the world and nearly took out the Alabama Crimson Tide two football seasons ago, I said right then and their how much respect I had for the program, for Dabo Swinney and for what they’ve been able to accomplish.  I also guaranteed that they’d win it all the following year.

Throughout the season I gave nothing but respect to Clemson and their fans as we watched them become the best team in the country and knock off Bama on the biggest stage of them all.  I congratulated all of my friends in Orange and went about my life.

Heck, before the season even began, I wrote this blog paying respect where it was due.

Respect given is respect earned.

Rise above.

Be the example.

Be better fans.

Nobody can force you to do anything.  I can’t make you decide to be kind rather than petty.  I can’t force you to rise above the idiots that attack you.  That’s for your to decide.

All I can do is lead by example, make my plea and go about my day.  So here’s hoping that at least one person decided to rise above it all today because of my request.

Congratulations once again to Clemson on their football success…that amazing run was yours to enjoy, just as this one is ours.

We’re still dancin’ Gamecocks, so let’s dance together!  It’s about USC..nobody else.

Forever to thee!


Find me on Twitter (@ditti33), Facebook (/InsideTheMindOfDitti) and Instagram (dittius33). 

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