[image from globeandmail.com]
The brainless wonders who took part in last night's riot in Vancouver after the Canucks lost the hockey game show a scary lack of consciousness. I know the majority of the crowd were caught in the crossfire, all jammed in together, those trying to do the right thing and just get away from there, the others on the fringes deciding this was a wonderful opportunity to smash windows and loot. Even those who wanted to were unable to get out of the city core.
Transit busses could not enter the area, because it was too dangerous, and two bridges were closed to try to contain the problem. Skytrain was running, but the sheer numbers of those leaving downtown could not be handled by Skytrain alone.
Bad place to be, in the middle of a crowd turning ugly. Reporters out in the thick of it were also at risk. Not to mention the police, and firemen, who were trying to do their jobs in a chaotic and dangerous situation.
Police cars and other vehicles were turned upside down and gasoline thrown in to set them ablaze. I watched the gorilla-like behavior (with apologies to gorillas) of guys beating their chests and taunting the police. The police behaved with restraint, and I applaud them. They were hemmed in by the hugeness of the crowd and fully out numbered, yet they did not panic. They stayed in control of themselves, however out of control the looters and rampagers were.
On tonight's news, the police chief said that the element creating the problem went downtown armed with gasoline, masks, and equipment, with the full intent to run wild and do damage. This riot was not caused by disappointed hockey fans. It was not even about hockey. When Boston won, apparently, the crowd inside the arena gave them a standing ovation, to acknowledge the great game they had played. THAT is the Vancouver I know.
Outside, it was a certain element who decided to get liquored up and run amok. Some innocent people, trapped in the wrong place at the wrong time, likely were among those hurt in the melee.
I find it all utterly disgusting. Store owners now have a horrible mess to clean up and pay for. City workers are sweeping up debris and shattered glass. We handled the Olympics with such jubilation and good feelings all around. What happened last night?
On The View, the women were agog, saying "They have free health care. What are they acting like that for?" Why indeed?
I am a mom. What moms do in this situation is say : "No more large-crowd events, till you kids learn how to behave appropriately."