Bryan Joiner

Why then I

Do Yankees Fans Have Legal Rights?

One year ago last month I served as best man for my friend Mike’s wedding. He married Laura, despite the fact she is a Yankees fan. He is a Phillies fan. Today, this is a problem.

Facebook comments have already suggested that divorce proceedings are being discussed, and possessions are already being separated. The problem here is that Laura is a lawyer, and Mike is not. She has crafty advantages as they sort through their property. At particular issue is the dog, whose name is Brooklyn. They both want him.

Being on the side of things that are good, I decided to consult some other attorneys, who, also in the name of good, have volunteered to help Mr. Tepper, pro bono. Here is what I have learned.

• Being a Yankees fan is grounds for divorce in 49 of 50 states.

This is not altogether surprising. Anti-NYY sentiment dates back as far as the Magna Carta, and was written into the Declaraton of Independence (it’s the stuff in invisible ink, on the back). While marrying a Yankees fan is one of the freedoms permitted by our First Amendment, it wasn’t always clear that this was the case, and most states put some sort of Yankees divorce clause into their charters just to be sure. The only one that didn’t, interestingly enough, was Massachusetts. “If you marry one, it’s your own damn problem,” was written into the Commonweath of Massachusetts charter in 1629 after being devised on the Mayflower.

• The rights of Brooklyn shareholders

As a full-time resident of Brooklyn, it is within my legal rights in the State of New York to claim Brooklyn the Dog by eminent domain. Pennsylvania (as the couple is, it is important and overdue to note, based in Philadelphia) and New York have an extradition arrangement wherein if a judge were to approve my motion, the dog would have to be delivered to me within two (2) business days. The dog then becoming mine, I could give him to Mike and Mike alone, whereupon he could either withhold the dog until Mrs. Mike decided to renounce her Yankees fandom or moved more than 500 feet away, the standard distance applied by Pennsylvania law for those seeking to avoid Yankees fans.

• Superseding clauses

The kicker is that Laura actually has no rights to any possessions as a Yankees fan. While some declare the law to be “wildly unconstitutional” and upheld during only the “darkest hours on our Supreme Court,” McGonigle vs. McGonigle ruled that Yankees fans are inherently Treasonous against the American ideals of life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness and as such are not entitled to hold U.S. property. They simply live among us, like UFOs that have taken the shape of humans, and are not protected by the Constitution. It is only by marrying Mike—a living, loving, breathing human being—that she is entitled to protection under our laws. Notable is that President George W. Bush attempted to overturn this law in the final days of his second term, only to have his deep unpopularity torpedo it. His successor, elected on a populist platform, announced during his Inauguration address that he would uphold the current law, drawing a rousing cheer from the millions on the Washington Mall. In subsequent months, despite harsh criticisms on literally every other front, right-wing critics such as Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck have applauded Mr. Obama’s leadership on this issue.

In short, we see nothing to indicate that Mike has anything to worry about, in a legal sense. In a baseball sense, this is a hell of a series, but the games will be fleeting (and hopefully, given the strength of both teams, great for everyone). He has chosen the path of life and liberty, and is legally protected into the far future.


Blame Bradford Campeau-Laurion

The 2004 title wasn’t enough. The Red Sox humiliated the Yankees in the ALCS, won the World Series, and got the so-called monkey off their back. Still, Yankees fans brought the bravo. Instead of “1918” T-shirts, Bronx-ers parroted lines like, “There was no curse… you just sucked for 86 years” and “26 to 6… who’s counting?” Humbled they weren’t, even if they had become the historical standard for in-series futility. They were the Yankees. The ship would right itself.

In 2005, the status quo reigned. The Yankees and Sox both went out in the first round of the playoffs. The Yankees took their series to the seventh inning of game five; the Sox got swept.

In 2006, the Yankees crept back up to the top. The Red Sox finished third in the American League East, which drew chuckles around these parts. Sure, I was laughing when Kenny Rogers absolutely b*tched the Yankees in the playoffs, but there was a real concern that 2004 was just a fluke. A beautiful, miraculous, oh-my-God it happened fluke, but just a giant speedbump on the Yankees dominance train.

Then came 2007. The Red Sox won the AL East and won the World Series. They could compete with the Yankees on a decade-long basis. Good. But the cycle wasn’t fully complete. The Yankees still made the playoffs. They didn’t get to feel what it was like to sit at home in October, watching an octet of other teams compete for their trophy. They hadn’t seen the bottom.

And then, last year, it happened. In the farewell season to The Stadium, it was hoped that the Yankees would close it with a bang and title number 27. Instead, their playoff chances were done by September 27. Now they were the third place team, the second-class team, the funniest team money could buy. They were finally just another team, and it was glorious.

Unfortunately for all of us, they had sown the seeds of their resurrection. They just didn’t know it. In a September game, they kicked out a fan for attempting to pee during God Bless America. That man’s name is Bradford Campeau-Laurion. Bradford Campeau-Laurion is a Red Sox fan. And Bradford-Campeau Laurion is a bastard. You see, we finally had everything that we wanted. And then he had to go and ask for more.

Campeau-Laurion contended that the Yankees had violated his first amendment rights by preventing his tinkle, and sought to have them apologize and end the policy. Sure, he was completely legally right and was right to challenge the policy, but that’s hardly the point: Campeau-Laurion taunted the beast. “Look,” God said, “What else do you want? You’re not even asking for money. I gave you everything you wanted, and you want more. Remember everything I did for you to get you out of this mess. I think you’re being greedy.”

Campeau-Laurion was taken aback. “I don’t think I’m—”

“SILENCE!” God said. “I’ll be the judge of that.”

While He was judging , the Yankees signed CC Sabathia, AJ Burnett, and Mark Teixeira. A-Rod got called out to the point where he stopped caring about what other people thought of him, and simply cared about hitting a baseball. The Yankees finished a stadium with a 150-foot right field porch, and hit approximately 75 home runs in April.

I’m not saying God is all “Go Yankees!” They’re in the World Series now, and I doubt God has a preference between them and the Phillies. But something changed this year, and I refuse to believe it’s a long-overdue balancing of the scales. No, I believe other forces are at work. Campeau-Laurion won his lawsuit in May, getting his lawyer’s fees paid for and a small, unsolicited payout from the city. The Yankees also agreed to forever allow peeing during God Bless America. Unfortunately, that includes during the World Series, too. Ergo, Brad’s fault.

I hope you’re happy.