posted on Aug, 26 2009 @ 09:51 AM
Personally, I have no interest in football - went to a game once as a kid, it was cold and raining and I couldn't see much, plus I've never really
been one for competition... but, as it happens I know a few people that would be labelled hooligans and a few guys that're (self) reformed.
It's a very interesting phenomen, as I see it - and I've heard many, many stories and witnessed some "incidents" - for some people (involved),
there's an amazing sense of camaraderie involved, if you're in the heart of it with fellow hooligans, it's very exhilerating and there's a bunch
of you fighting for a common goal, with the very real threat of physical harm - there's a massive rush and sense of community, that often isn't
otherwise present. Look at other areas where groups work together in the face of danger and look at the social-dynamics in that group...
In no way do I mean this disparragingly, but look at soldiers, firefighters, oil-rig workers - areas that are very dangerous, then see the way they
interact. There's a bond there that is rarely present in other professions, they all realise their lives can be in the hands of a colleague.
We're in a place as a society where common-bondings aren't common... people are mostly in it for themselves and constantly fed by the media that a
life of accruing possessions is success - and there's a massive swath of people that will never be able to do this (myself included, I just don't
want "that" kind of success), so they're potentially from backgrounds where they've never had that sort of bonding and then they get it, get
recognition for "achievements" etc - very attractive to some.
As a statement of personal experience, all the people I've known involved in hooliganism seem to me (as someone that doesn't care for football), to
have a great knowledge of the sport, be very informed on history, tactics etc and have a genuine passion for the game, it seems as though the
hooliganism and football though are separate entities to them - the sport is one thing to them and the hooliganism another, they just happen to go
hand in hand. Even without football (or another sport), these people would still be violent and seek out others to engage with in this way.