Feedback from the Issue of Thursday, February 12, 2009

Steeler Nation is one huge dysfunctional family: As a lifelong Steelers fan, a lifelong Pittsburgh resident, a blue-collar, 15-year veteran of the Pittsburgh Bureau of Fire, a 25-year veteran of the United States Army Reserve (Retired), I found your comments to be right on and hilarious.

You probably have received quite a few letters of disgust from many Steelers fans, but deep down we know that most of what you wrote is true. The good part is, I can look at these things, and I can laugh about them. As one of the Cardinals' former coaches once (kind of) said, "We are who you think we are."

Where you go wrong is that you portray what Steelers fans are as a bad thing. Nope. You see, it's like being part of one huge dysfunctional family. But when the you-know-what hits the fan, we have each other's backs. Cardinals fans will never experience this brotherhood and, deep down, yinz are truly envious of that fact.

Steelers fans aren't just white trash. You will find us in the war zones of Iraq and Afghanistan and all throughout the military. We can be found throughout the countries of Europe. We party in Australia. And we're found in many bars throughout the Phoenix municipal area.

As you know, your illustrious mayor and the Cardinals' mascot defaced the Terrible Towel in public, and the result of Super Bowl XLIII speaks for itself. So go on and have your fun ripping on the greatest fans in all of sports, but remember this: You will never find an Arizona Cardinals bar anywhere near Pittsburgh.
Tim Yakich, Pittsburgh

Get outside your bubble, Martin: I was deeply offended by your article. You clearly have no idea what life is like outside the little bubble that you call home.

I know that you were trying to get your fans riled up for the big game. I also know that I never saw one article that defamed all people who live in Arizona. I never would have seen your article, except that it was cited on Wikipedia as proof that Pittsburgh was full of no-class, ignorant hillbillies.
Charles J. Vukotich, Pittsburgh

Leave the great Myron alone: Wow, you have the nerve! This article was just a hint of what tasteless shit you write. You come off describing Pittsburgh as if it's hillbilly country. My friend, that'd be West Virginia. Are you mad because of the sixth Super Bowl win — about which your great Arizona fans complain about the officiating? You got beat fair and square.

As for your remarks about Steelers broadcaster Myron Cope, he's a grandfather figure to everyone in Pittsburgh. Don't trash the man because of what he did. Are you jealous because your team can't incorporate a fan base that waves towels at every game? The Super Bowl was littered with them. So much for Steelers fans being trashy, huh?

Pittsburgh fans outnumbered Cardinals fans 4 to 1. A huge number, but we are white trash? How many white trash people do you know who can afford Super Bowl tickets?

This article was just straight tasteless. Without Pittsburgh, the United States wouldn't be where it is today. Does steel ring a bell?
David Coddington, Grindstone, Pennsylvania

Doth protest too much?: I can see from the hundreds of outraged comments attached to your Super Bowl story online that you've certainly riled up Steelers faithful by stating the obvious. What's so funny about all the blind-angry response from Steelers fans is that most of the story criticizes Cardinals fans for not backing their team fully (as Steelers fans back theirs).

Chrissakes, there are only a few paragraphs about Steeler Nation's Appalachian roots. Chill out, Black and Gold! You're proving the writer's point. How does the line from The Bard go: "Methinks the lady doth protest too much"?

Come on, if you've ever been to a Steelers game (I've been to many), you know that the paper's assessment of us fans isn't that far off. Yeah, there are Ph.D. Steelers fans out there, but we've got our share of doublewide dwellers. (I doubt even a majority of our fans actually live in the city.)

Anyway, calm down, guys and gals. We won the Super Bowl, albeit barely. And now everybody in Steelerdom's blind mad because a writer at an alternative newspaper in Phoenix calls them a couple of names. This is football! Man up! Yinz can take it.
Russ Johnson, Pittsburgh

Stuck in the dark: Very classy article. While Pittsburgh's praising your Cardinals for playing a good game and turning their team around, you bash Steelers fans. White trash? That's racist. I guess you're stuck in the dark while the country is moving forward.
Stephanie Prosdocimo, Pittsburgh

In defense of the wonderful Mr. Cope: I was born and raised in Pittsburgh. I had to move out of the area in the '80s because of my job, but to this day, Pittsburgh's in my heart. I bleed black and gold. Your writer's from the Cleveland area, so this story's par for the course for a Browns fan.

People from western Pennsylvania and West Virginia are not hillbillies and white trash. Think about it, your area is eaten up with old people. Are you one of them? Steelers fans come from all walks of life and all over the world — our common thread is the love of the Steelers. It's so cool when you run into a stranger with a Steelers logo on his car, clothing. I've made so many new friends because of this common bond.

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