Last night I watched parts of my city get torn apart by a small percentage of idiots over of all things, a hockey game. The Vancouver Canucks lost Game 7 of the Stanley Cup finals to the Boston Bruins, 4-0. Before the game was done, the riot had begun. I knew it would happen, I predicted it would happen, but I still marveled at the amount of idiocy on display, to the point where it hit every major news outlet in North America, and even internationally, from Britain to Australia to India. Rioters overturned cars, burned them, started fist fights and broke windows of various businesses. As an example of how incredibly stupid things were last night, I watched footage of a young man run onto a burning car. He tried to jump over the flames, but slipped and fell into the flames. He managed to jump out with his arms raised, screaming with glee as to what he accomplished. The most ironic thing I heard last night, was the mantra "Boston sucks!" by rioters as they tore apart their own city. The saddest thing I saw, was a man trying to prevent people from breaking a store window, standing in front telling them to stop and screaming that this is his city. Half a dozen men turn on him and start punching and kicking him.
I watched all this from my home, but my girlfriend was working during the riots. She works as a nurse at St. Paul's Hospital, which is in downtown Vancouver. She was on the graveyard shift last night, working through the night under a "code orange" with the hospital under lockdown. This basically means they were prepping for mass casualties. She spent most of the night watching people getting dunked, which means tanks of water were set up in front of the hospital, and people who had been pepper sprayed were made to take off their shirts, get dunked in the tanks, wash their faces with soap and then get their clothes bagged.
It is clear now that there was a small group of people intending to riot, regardless of the score. They brought their own pepper spray, their own incendiaries... The good will built up by successfully hosting the Olympics last year was destroyed in a few short hours over a silly hockey game. So what does this have to do with MMA? I am not above using this to outline that MMA itself does not breed violence. Before UFC 131 came to town, the police chief, Jim Chu requested the UFC pay for extra security. A request the UFC righty denied. The reasoning was that when UFC 115 was held in Vancouver last year, there were incidents caused by MMA fans, including a supposed gay bashing against two gay men by men who, "supposedly" attended the event.
My point is that morons are morons. It doesn't matter what sporting event is on. What happened last night had nothing to do with hockey. It's not a reflection of how Vancouverites are in general. Vancouverites are showing their support by starting facebook pages calling for the outing and tagging of idiots responsible for the riots last night, as well as a call for volunteers to help clean the city up this morning. But there is a small portion of people in Vancouver who have in the past, and will do so again in the future, continue to cause problems. Vancouver endured a riot the last time the Canucks lost in the 1994 playoffs, there were small riots in 2002 when the Guns'n Roses concert was canceled, there were problems in the first couple days of the Olympics, and now this. As a Vancouverite, I cannot deny that there is something about this city that lends itself to these types of actions. Let's put it this way: Calgary didn't riot when their team lost in the Stanley Cup finals in 2004. Do we just seem to have a deeper pool of idiots to draw from? I don't know. It certainly doesn't represent the majority of citizens here, but this is a problem that exists and needs to be addressed.
As a final note, Dana White, a man who is no stranger to stupid behavior, tweeted this:
Hey morons stop ruining ur beautiful city of vancouver!!! Its just a fucking hockey game!!!!!!
When Dana calls you a moron, you really are a moron.