It’s been a rocky season. Between the compressed schedule, the team’s up and down performance, and a number of controversial issues, a lot of people understandably are feeling heightened tensions and emotions.
We also have an influx of new supporters in the North End, which we knew would happen with the recent expansion. The combination of these two things means that some fans may be discovering the club just as it’s in the midst of a somewhat tempestuous period of change and growth. It also means that some supporters may want to support the teams in ways that feel best for them or to their best capability.
Unfortunately, over the last few weeks, we’ve heard reports of people in the North End feeling bullied or intimidated by those around them for supporting in ways that others have disagreed with. We want to make it clear that these actions are unacceptable and will not be tolerated. This is not “radically inclusive,” and it is not “If you want to be TA/Riveters, then you already are.”
Our hope is that people can remember when they, too, were new to the North End and the feelings they felt when they first experienced the joy and the passion of the Timbers Army and/or Rose City Riveters.
The stadium expansion gives us an opportunity to welcome new faces into the Timbers Army and Rose City Riveters family — as well as connect with long-time supporters we maybe haven’t met before. We need to make sure we’re encouraging and educating everyone in a positive way. This means answering questions, making sure they have chant sheets, and remembering to — as Timber Jim would say — Spread the Love.