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Wrong Decision On Ryan Getzlaf

from Mark Spector of Sportsnet,

Hey, NHL. Rainbow tape isn’t enough.

Anyone can tape up a stick with pinks and reds and purples, use it at a skills competition, and then fall right back into our black-and-white hockey culture the next day. What’s hard is to look in the mirror and ask, “Why?”

Why have the other sports’ experienced players come out, but not the National Hockey League? Or Canadian Major Junior Hockey?

Why do the NHL, the NHL Players’ Association, the Anaheim Ducks and Ryan Getzlaf look at the “C” word spoken in the heat of the moment by Getzlaf in Game 4 of the Western Conference Final and not hear the word the way a gay man would hear that word?...

When terms hurt people, common decency dictates we stop using them.

And so it is time for the hockey world to examine the word Getztlaf used, one that has been accepted inside its dressing rooms for decades, and decide if it is acceptable anymore. It is a Top 10 swear word in the hockey vernacular. Maybe Top 5.

Getzlaf is a product of the Western Canadian hockey culture, as am I. He grew up in Regina and played his junior hockey in Calgary. I’m an Edmonton guy. We have both been desensitized to the word, the same way a doctor does not get squeamish at the sight of blood.

That is why the NHL, the Ducks, the NHLPA and Getzlaf all missed a golden opportunity this weekend to actually walk the gay rights walk. To not just tape a hockey stick for the LGBTQ community, but to identify and admit to a metaphor for homophobia that exists inside hockey’s DNA, and start down the path to removing it.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, NHL Talk, NHLPA, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ryan+getzlaf

Comments

ilovehomers's avatar

I am so sick and tired of PC culture.

I saw a comment on facebook the other day, where a commentor essentially accused those who like NHL Playoffs better than NBA playoffs as racists because, in his terms ‘less black people on their TV.”

Screw off.

Posted by ilovehomers on 05/22/17 at 02:01 PM ET

Avatar

It looks like more of the typical NHL office game of making arbitrary exceptions
based on…whatever make-it-up-as-they-go-along criteria.

So Andrew Shaw was suspended a game for the exact same thing?

But Getzlaf can’t be…because he is a captain? Or a first-line center?
Or, because it’s too far along in the series or too far into the playoffs?

This isn’t otherwise a grey area, like “just how bad was that slash?”

He said it in an abusive way toward an official, just like Shaw did.

But now it’s less bad because why?

Whatever one thinks of penalizing players for saying abusive and offensive things
toward opponents or officials, etc, the league again looks silly and inconsistent.

Posted by Lefty30 on 05/22/17 at 02:04 PM ET

StayClassy's avatar

I can’t think of what C word would be a slur relating to gay men…

Posted by StayClassy from Wings fan in Columbus on 05/22/17 at 02:07 PM ET

TreKronor's avatar

I’ve been called worse things, as have the refs.

It seems the severity just comes down to which offended group complained/complains the most.

Que the, “you don’t know what it’s like” crowd.

Posted by TreKronor on 05/22/17 at 02:15 PM ET

Avatar

Hmmm.

Well, I totally agree about the example you cite, ILH.

That’s just stupid - and this new tack of trying to call everyone racist who disagrees
even slightly in matters of personal taste, or in regard to sincere philosophical
or policy disagreements, is not only unwarranted…it’s so counterproductive
and alienating toward decent people who mean well and aren’t even doing anything wrong
or offensive. In so many cases it’s just not accurate. And it’s such an ugly slur to
throw at first resort, that it just ends up weakening and delegitimizing the term “racist”.
Which I don’t think is helpful in combating actual serious racism.

Do NBA fans or hip-hop fans require an audit to ensure they are also including enough
hockey or indie rock in their personal consumption?

But I take this issue with Getzlaf a little differently. We have to assume based on sheer numbers
that there have been some good hockey players over the years who were/are gay and
just couldn’t ever feel comfortable coming out, or even just feeling comfortable in their own
skin, because the culture is so traditionally hostile. I personally have mixed feelings about
a league telling players “you can’t say this or that word”. But I do think the prevalence and
tacit acceptance of terms like Getzlaf used have got to make life a lot harder, even less safe
for gay folks playing hockey - including even more vulnerable young people. People are still
bashed on the street for being gay, even in liberal NYC. I can see the legitimate concern
in the NHL not wanting to legitimize hate or abuse toward gay players, officials, fans, whatever.
But be consistent!

Posted by Lefty30 on 05/22/17 at 02:18 PM ET

WingedRider's avatar

He said no one heard what he said. What about a Game Misconduct for abusing a ref. Maybe this is a new rule implemented for the playoffs, LOL.

Perry should get a hearing for his physical abuse to the official trying to keep 2 players apart, really a blessing in disguise ,  Perry would have lost any physical.

Kesler should be suspended for ....Being Kesler

A team of misfits

Posted by WingedRider from Saskatoon, SK on 05/22/17 at 02:28 PM ET

Avatar

Ehhh I mean, I think the pc culture argument is a little ragged at this point.  The problem here is that the NHL is trying to somehow defend something that has zero upside to defending.  Whether you agree with PC culture or not, you cant come up with a scenario in which its advantageous to say the word and then say “it wasnt that bad, its just an obscene word!”  Just say, yeah I shouldn’t have said and im giving a grand to the local blah blah blah chapter chartiy organization.  The NHL is tone deaf.  There is no upside to their argument.  Simple public relations is beyond them.

Posted by PMP5030 on 05/22/17 at 02:31 PM ET

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Snowflake sjws and their faux outrage mixed with the desire to control language are far more dangerous than any name calling.  Man up already.

Posted by SlimChance on 05/22/17 at 04:52 PM ET

bigfrog's avatar

Perry should get a hearing for his physical abuse to the official trying to keep 2 players apart, really a blessing in disguise ,  Perry would have lost any physical.

Kesler should be suspended for ....Being Kesler

A team of misfits


A team of goons, except for Eaves of course. cool smirk

Posted by bigfrog on 05/22/17 at 06:47 PM ET

Avatar

Snowflake sjws and their faux outrage mixed with the desire to control language are far more dangerous than any name calling.  Man up already.

Posted by SlimChance on 05/22/17 at 05:52 PM ET

Isn’t the league attempting to do the same thing in regards to controlling language?  They just happen to be representing the side you may agree with.

I understand that some believe the left’s focus on language to be “fascist” and an affront to free speech.  But arguing the definition of obscene language and to whom and how it may be offensive isn’t something the NHL ought to be getting into.  Even if you believe they’re correct in principle, there is no reward, no positive outcome or advantage that can be gained by the NHL legislating which words they deem to be slurs versus which words are just vulgar language.  That is the argument here - whether the word is offensive and to whom its offensive is immaterial.

 

Posted by PMP5030 on 05/23/17 at 06:32 AM ET

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The PC police out again in full force.  What they don’t understand is the road they are taking us all down is a dangerous road and history has many examples of it…. that is if these PC kids even have history class anymore.  It may not be allowed in their safe spaces.

Posted by gretzky_to_lemieux on 05/23/17 at 07:14 AM ET

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Snowflake sjws and their faux outrage mixed

*#$%@& yourself.

Posted by CharDeeMacDennis on 05/23/17 at 07:56 AM ET

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*#$%@& yourself.


hmmm.  2 games.

Posted by gretzky_to_lemieux on 05/23/17 at 08:08 AM ET

ilovehomers's avatar

Posted by gretzky_to_lemieux on 05/23/17 at 09:08 AM ET

Which makes the Marchand suspension for a spear to the nads look EXTREMELY light.

Posted by ilovehomers on 05/23/17 at 08:49 AM ET

Avatar

Lmao gtl! How does it make the special characters feel to be typed in an abusive word. The poor dollar sign will need therapy.

Sticks and stone will break my bones but microaggressions are worse than Hitler.

Xoxo, CharDee !

Posted by SlimChance on 05/23/17 at 10:23 AM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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