Our rallying needs to be respectful

Many seniors have been so excited to get back to cheering on the sidelines at sporting events after a year and a half online. Our Panther pride shines brightly through the Panther Pit, where students overwhelm the bleachers to cheer on our sports teams, an activity loved by many. As much as I love seeing our school gather together and chant classic cheers, there is a growing issue with the inappropriate behavior in the Pit that could easily lead us to negative consequences.

This was clearly reflected in the Thousand Oaks vs Newbury Park football home game on Sept. 24, when the Pit was double its usual size and students roared in an intense school rivalry. I love seeing the Pit rally with school spirit each game, but I was disappointed to see how some students were behaving. During the game, I saw the administration grow more and more frustrated with the several students shouting explicit cheers towards the opposing team. Even the Pit leaders attempted to stop these inappropriate cheers yet they still persisted, rising from the back of the bleachers.

This discourtesy has spread to sports events beyond football as well. In the girls’ volleyball game against Westlake at home, the Panther Pit showed up strong with many water polo players coming to support the girls with rallying and posters. However, one of these posters stated, “I Love Volleyball + Spandex,” aimed towards the players wearing the short Spandex shorts they are required to by the sport. As a former volleyball player, I understand the frustration of constantly being sexualized because of the sports you play. Even after being initially kicked out of the game for this sign, a student was able to return to the game and continue holding it up.

With the increase in a lack of decorum, I fear that the administration may revoke our privilege to support our sports teams if we continue to act inappropriately in the Pit. I fear that we are setting a bad representation of NPHS conflicting with our school pride and love for Newbury Park. I implore students to keep up with the amazing energy and support for our competing teams, but urge that as the season goes on, we act respectfully towards others to maintain our school pride.

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