A Battle That Must Stop

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Every country and nation has its specialty. Its recognition is through its tradition, culture, ethnicity, language, animals, birds, etc. Apart from all of this, what truly defines a nation is also a sport. Every nation, city, district, and village holds a lot of pride in their sportspersons. Today my article is going to be something that we have been seeing a lot in recent years. However, it is a sad, bad and disheartening thing it has become obvious in our society and needs a desperate amount of change.  My topic is going to be about how people who play sports experience criticism that goes beyond the sport.

Constant Battle with criticism

When a group of members plays on an international level, they represent the entire country in that game. Many people’s expectations are on their shoulders. The players are well aware that many things depend on their performance and sometimes even winning. They prepare themselves every single day to give their hundred percent and do well in the matches. They even prepare themselves for all the hurdles and problems that they have to face during the matches. Nevertheless, what they do not expect is the amount of criticism they receive when they do not do well or sometimes do not win the match. I am not saying the criticism is bad however when the criticism negatively affects the player and their family it is very disheartening and unwelcomed. When I mean criticism, I am not referring to the lapses that we see in the game. I am referring to the troll, backlash, unnecessary boycott, shaming, targeting, death threats, and rape threats to the players and their family members. These are just some of the things that players suffer when their performance is not up to the mark of people’s expectations or have not won the trophy.

We often expect sportsmanship and the right spirit from the players. However, this needs to come from normal people as well or people who watch any kind of sport ardently. Speaking negatively, harshly, rudely is not going to help anyone. If people think that poor performance or not winning does not affect the players of any sport then you are wrong. If we as an audience feel sad or angry about winning or not doing well, imagine the amount of the same feelings that these players go through. Their intensity will be much higher than ours will because these players give their lives away to playing for their country. They work hard and go through rigorous practice and training because they are well aware that they are playing for their country and not just for themselves.

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I have often observed people justifying their actions in many ways. It is sad to know that just because these players are good at their sport their identification as human beings are completely lost. They are expected to win and do well every single time. The only time they are given an exemption is when they have a physical injury that will not allow them to play. People forget that just because these sports players are amazing at their work does not mean that they cannot have times when they do not do well. Sportspeople are not robots or even humans who have an unimaginable amount of superpowers that, they will win and do extraordinarily well every single time. Neither should we expect that from them nor should we expect that from ourselves.

It is high time that the ideology of ‘If one is doing well, working hard and giving their hundred percent all the time then they will always win’ goes away from society so that becomes more humane and compassionate for all. People might not know this but giving your hundred percent every single time and trying to win every single time drains an individual constantly until they have nothing left for themselves. This has to change and the acceptance of not doing well or even for that matter, the people should accept not winning.

The other problems that play an important role in the process of criticism are politics, religion, caste, etc. We have been seeing this so much around the world that it often questions the very idea of unity and diversity at least for me. Their personal choices are a medium for people to criticize them negatively so much, so that is nothing less than a traumatic experience. I am not referring just to a few countries; rather I am talking about this problem as a whole. It is not fair that the sportspersons who represent their countries with all their heart and soul be constantly under the radar of negativity and criticism for their religion, caste, etc. It should rather come out as a fact that when these sports players represent their country and play matches with their opponents, they forget about everything else and only focus on making their nation proud and bringing a good name for their country.  

The most heart-wrenching thing that has come to my observation is about how this constant criticism drags family members of these sportspeople. This happens not just to members such as parents or wives or siblings but also to their children, which is disgusting and inappropriate. What is worse is that now it has become a trend among people to throw death and rape threats at these players and their family members. This shows that rape has nothing to do with the way women dress rather it has everything to do with the mentality of the people. Even though we are in the 21st-century wives are still responsible for the performance of their husbands in the matches and games. Even his or her family members are in the picture for no joy or valid reason. People solely for creating havoc and problems have constantly intruded on the personal lives of these sportspersons, which need to change.

Social media also plays a major role in spewing negative comments and posts about sports players and their family members. There is constant competition between different fan groups of players though these players in real have nothing between them. It is high time that when people call themselves fans of a sports player, they also have some kind of sportsman spirit in them and behave more ethically towards low performance and not winning.

I wanted to put some examples of these happening with sports players but then I realized that most of the players have gone through this in their life at some point regardless of what sport they play. Putting all of them in this article would not be possible therefore if readers want to know, the things players go through they can check it on the internet, which has all the information out there.

To conclude, I hope this never-ending battle comes to an end. There has been progress and change but it has to keep going on until we win the battle against this negativity and bad situations. There is no victory if people do not support each other and stand for each other through good and bad times and this plays a very important role in the relationship of sportspeople and the people of his country.


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