I'm a female. I love wrestling. That should be self-evident. I shouldn't have to justify why I love it. It should just be enough that I say I do. Nobody questions a male wrestling fan. But because I'm a girl, I'm only in it for the hot guys, right?
No. Like I said, I shouldn't have to justify my love for this sport. I could draw up a whole blog post about why. I could talk about the sound of bodies smacking the canvas, or sitting in a crowd of raucous fans chanting obscenities, or the matches that take your breath away and make you rise to your feet and scream at the top of your lungs and do victory arms so hard your shoulders hurt. It's moonsaults and enziguiris and suicide dives off the top rope and dragonranas and crazy submission moves. It's passion; the passion of the guys in the indies, doing what they love. And doing what they love is what we love.
Seriously, I could talk about this for hours. And pages. But that's not why we're here, that's another post. (Or possibly several other posts.)
Now. There are wrestlers I do find attractive and love to watch because of that in addition to their incredible talent. Chris Sabin off the top rope, Alex Shelley Slicing Bread, Eddie Edwards in a backbend, whatever. There are some incredibly good-looking wrestlers, I'm not going to lie to you guys about that.
But so we're absolutely 100% completely clear on this fact, it is not all about the attractive guys in spandex. Okay? Okay.
Now that we've cleared that up. Here's what I came here to talk about. I stumbled across this today:
This is Tyler Black (AKA Seth Rollins, referred hereafter as Tyler for continuity's sake) responding to a question on Formspring.
Now, in my opinion, a ring rat is essentially a wrestling "groupie". Someone who's there for the sole intention of gaining a wrestler's attention in order to fuck him. I honestly don't know how often this happens, but you generally find rats attending the main promotions. Whether these girls are honest fans of the sport or are just there to fuck a pseudo-famous person, I don't honestly know. It probably varies from person to person. I'm not a rat nor have ever been a rat, so I really cannot say with any authority on the matter. However, I can say that there absolutely is a difference between honest fan and ring rat.
(Feminist disclaimer: it's the 21st century, and women can fuck whoever they want as many times as they want, I don't care. However, "ring rat" holds a negative connotation, whether rightly or wrongly given. I speak only of the reputation of the term in the industry.)
But apparently there are some people who don't feel the same.
When asked the difference between an honest fan and a ring rat, Tyler Black blithely says that there is no difference. In essence, Tyler Black just called the entire female wrestling fanbase whores.
There are so many things wrong with that statement that I don't even know where to start.
As a female wrestling fan, I am appalled and offended by that answer. That is a horribly negative, sexist, unthinking stupid assholish thing to say. I don't know if he was kidding, or being a smart ass, or trying to stir some stuff up. I don't care. The fact of the matter is that he looks like a sexist moron. It's one thing for an average dude (or average wrestling fan) to say something stupid like that. But this man is (supposed to be!) a professional.
I get it. Sometimes you say stupid things. Sometimes you accidentally call a fan a fag when you're trying to heel up the audience. (Punk, I'm looking at you.) In the heat of the moment, sometimes things slip out. While that is an incredibly derogatory term, I forgive Punk for having said it because, again... things slip out.
Sometimes you're trying to be incendiary because you're a heel. I get that too. And one of the best and easiest ways to be a heel is to alienate your fans. There's a lot of "YOU PEOPLE" in heel parlance. But there's a line. You call your fans stupid; you don't call them whores or faggots or retards. You don't alienate one subsection of your fans.
I don't know what Tyler's current character orientation is at this time, nor do I care. There's being a heel, there's being ignorant, and then there's just being an asshole. Refusing to acknowledge a solid percentage of serious fans isn't being a good heel, if that is what he was going for. It's being a sexist idiot, end of statement, no excuse.