Feature

Canada: We’re lovers, not thuggish hooligans

How sweet, then, that the enduring image from the riot will be that of an Australian-born man and his Canadian girlfriend lying together as a mob surges by in the background, said John Doyle in The Globe and Mail.

John Doyle
The Globe and Mail

An amorous couple kissing in the street has redeemed Canada’s image, said John Doyle. The riot in Vancouver following the Canucks’ loss to the Boston Bruins in hockey’s Stanley Cup Finals last week was an embarrassingly adolescent display. Stores were smashed and looted, cars were overturned and torched, and mobs of belligerent and drunken fans swarmed the streets, hurling tear-gas canisters right back at the overwhelmed police.

The riot sprang from “an indulgence of male rage that is part and parcel of the hockey culture,” which our Conservative government has co-opted. The Conservatives have been trying “to remold Canada into a warrior nation, proud of being much more militarized,” and they’ve been hyping hockey’s aggression and brutality as something intrinsically Canadian.

How sweet, then, that the enduring image from the riot will be that of an Australian-born man and his Canadian girlfriend lying together in the smoky, riot-torn street as a mob surges by in the background. “The photo captures how Canadians think of themselves and want the world to think of Canadians—decent, sweet-natured people, nonviolent, much less aggressive than our crazy, violence-prone neighbors in the United States.” The image reaffirms that we’re “lovers and peacekeepers, not warriors and warmongers.”

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