Thursday, June 16, 2011

Vancouver goes berserk -- again

I had a feeling that the Boston Bruins were going to win this year's Frederick A. Stanley Cup -- yes, the guy's first name was Fred -- but what happened last night in Vancouver, that is the riots, was inexcusable.   The police knew this was bound to happen.   The game book they used during last year's Winter Olympics simply wasn't going to work.   There's a huge difference between welcoming fans from 85 other countries and trying to keep the peace, and controlling totally unruly fans from just one city (there was a fair size Boston contingent but from I could see they were mostly treated actually respectfully -- it was the goons from the Lower Mainland that ruined it for everyone).

The only question I have to ask is, given the experience after 1994 when the Canucks lost to the New York Rangers, where was the heavy duty equipment -- the silent sound wave cannons, the water cannons, anything short of deadly force?   In Britain and France, two countries that have no problem with posse comitatus, they'd even bring in the Armed Forces to restore law and order after a soccer riot.   This is a situation that should have been dissipated before it started.  I watched some of the coverage last night, and what told the story for me wasn't the cop cars being torched but a couple of high school graduations that were holed up inside a banquet hall just across from CBC's Vancouver studios, because they couldn't leave due to the ruckus.

For a lot of people ice hockey is all.   But in the end, just like soccer, it's just a game.

1 comment:

The Mound of Sound said...

This wasn't about hockey. The riots would have broken out, win or lose. It's become a form of street theatre expressed in wanton destruction.

This time may be somewhat different than the past. Look at any photo of the rioters. Among the crowd are many people holding point and shoot cameras or cellphone cams.

Even as the rioting was continuing last night, web sites were going up inviting witnesses to "post your pictures" in order that the miscreants could then be "tagged."

This morning these people are being hunted.