Despite suffering a setback this week, a die-hard Green Bay Packers fan says that he still plans to challenge the Chicago Bears in a federal lawsuit filed against the team.
That Bears season ticket holder, Russell Beckman, says that when he tried to wear his Packers gear on the field before a Bears game in 2016, the team denied him entry, saying that he was violating Soldier Field policy.
Beckman then filed suit against the team, but he was handed a setback on Thursday when a federal judge ruled in favor of the Bears and denied Beckman an injunction that would have allowed him to wear his gear on the field before Sunday’s game between the two teams.
Despite the setback, Beckman says that he will still continue on with his lawsuit, and he is confident he will prevail.
“The Bears established this rule that I really disagree with, honestly I feel it’s pretty stupid and doesn’t have any basis and reason,” he said. “It bothered me and I tried really hard to work with them to try to get them to change it.”
The Bears say that they agree with the judge’s ruling on the motion, but declined to comment further on the case.
The suit claims that the Bears’ policy infringes on his First Amendment rights, and says that the team is so intertwined with the Chicago Park District that they must adhere to those laws.
“I’m not trying to stir up trouble, but sometimes you have to stand and make a principle,” he said.
Beckman, who initially represented himself, now has a local attorney in his corner, and says that students from Duke University’s First Amendment clinic are also aiding in the case. The next court date in the case has yet to be set after Thursday’s ruling.
For Sunday's game, Beckman says that he will still attend the game in his Packers gear, but will not go down to the field for pre-game warm-ups.