Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports
There were some Boston Bruins fans who made racist comments about P.K. Subban. There were a lot more Montreal Canadiens fans using them to generalize an entire fan base.
There is no excusing racist behavior. But is it really necessary for everyone to act as if this is wide-sweeping? I’m not saying it’s fine and it should be ignored. But it also should not be made into ‘Boston is racist’.
A lot of good-natured Boston fans got the brunt of the backlash. They were called out about either not doing anything or standing up for their fan base. Gee, that sounds a lot like Canadiens fans when there were riots around Montreal or when some fans chose to boo the American National Anthem.
People take this stuff, rivalry and game way too seriously. That’s a societal issue. But it’s not one group of fans or the other. It’s both and, really, it’s people from anywhere in the world cheering for any team in the world. Stupidity, unlike some people, doesn’t discriminate. You call out Boston fans using racial epithets, I show you Canadiens fans showing up in blackface. (I am not saying these are equal or as widespread. Just the best apples-to-apples comparison.)
Every fan base has its bad apples. It shouldn’t be up to the good fans to defend their fan base. Just like fights in arenas or parking lots or people who make threats. It’s not everybody who does this, but we all suffer because of it.
The people from Boston who called out Subban for his skin color are classless and should be criticized. But when it comes to fans, there are always going to be outliers who do something so mind-numbingly stupid we all wonder how they managed to get out of bed.
Judging an entire fan base or city because of it or making light of #BostonStrong is just as stupid. I mentioned yesterday before Game 1 on Twitter that I don’t hate Boston, the Bruins or their fans. I just hate idiots. Some of them cheer for the Black and Gold. Some of them also cheer for the Bleu-Blanc-Rouge.
Standing on a moral high ground can be shaky. I don’t judge Bruins fans as a whole based on a few yahoos because I wouldn’t want to be judged with any yahoo Canadiens fans.
Acting like you’re better than everyone else usually just means the opposite. We are all the same. We are all hockey fans. We are all more alike than different.
Booing an anthem or rioting in the streets is also stupid. Canadiens fans should know better than to throw stones from their house of glass.