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OP-ED: Gritty Didn’t Punch That Kid, but He Should Have

Illustration by Seyoung An / The Daily Pennsylvanian

Philadelphia Flyers mascot Gritty was in hot water after he allegedly punched a child a couple of weeks ago. Gritty reportedly took a running start and struck a 13-year-old boy in the back (this is all real. Look it up). The subsequent police investigation has cleared Gritty of any misdoings. Maybe it's the Philadelphia talking, but I, for one, say that Gritty should have punched that kid. 

Philadelphia has always been a city unafraid to tackle new ideas. Upon its founding, Philadelphia was a center of religious tolerance, pacifism, and Enlightened philosophy. During the 1770s, the city became the first capital of the American experiment. The city remained the “City of Brotherly Love,” but abandoned its Quaker pacifism to fight for freedom. Likewise in 2018, Philadelphia was the only city brave enough to defeat the New England Patriots. Philadelphia has always been willing to fight for what is right.  

So why are we backing down now? Gritty, like the young American experiment, has the right to defend freedom. We sacrifice more than just our mascot by inaction, we sacrifice our very identity. We become like every other city in America if our mascots aren’t willing to randomly slug a child. Freedom is not clean-cut; it’s gritty.