NHL lockout is our creation
Fans enabled it to happen
Todd Colin Vaughan
So Saturday, September 15, 2012 was hockey D-Day. The arenas went silent, the ice was thawed and the pockets books shrunk.
For years, we fans have been duped into thinking that collective bargaining does things like “protect our game” and ensure that “our sport remains strong.”
The truth of the matter is that everything any of these jokers say — players and owners alike — is nonsense and we all suffer for it.
The worse truth is that every fan over the age of 12 is just as guilty as these nattering zillionaires. Don’t believe me? Just check out how much attendance went up after the last lockout.
Rather then abandon these peak physical athletes who would rather wear their suits then skates, we instead went out in flocks and paid the piper to the tune of $150/seat.
We should have abandoned them. Instead we allowed their selfish snobbery to continue and now they get to have a few months off while lawyers argue minutiae for them.
Why did we do this? Well I guess us beaver-loving flag bearers just can’t stand the loss of our game for too long. But please consider some societal factors that come into play when other non-sport related organizations going into collective bargaining.
In Canada, we have several essential services — education, health and mail to name a few. These organizations have the right to bargain for their salaries. Often times, our government will legislate these people back to work during strikes.
Consider that these citizens work hard everyday to provide things for society that we absolutely need and their right to bargain is well-deserved and needs to be protected.
Now consider that hockey players and owners, both of whom make several times that of a nurse, teacher or mail carrier, cannot be legislated into ending a strike or lockout. How in the hell does this make sense? Especially when public money is often put into building arenas for these teams.
Professional athletes are, for all intents and purposes, entertainers and nothing else. I love a great goal as much as the next guy, but where do they get off singing the sob stories of the one per cent?
No one feels the pain of $5.5 million compared to $6.1 million in a player’s salary. No one cries over the owners making 51 per cent instead of 53. It’s just rich people swill and shouldn’t be bought by any of us.
If they want us to feel bad for them maybe they should bring up the dad and his son with tickets in the very back bleachers for their one game they can afford to go to a year.
Maybe they should bring up the people working as vendors, ushers and parking attendants who will lose that income.
Maybe they should bring up that hockey isn’t about advertising beer, selling box suites to corporations or tricking parents into spending thousands of dollars on body armor year after year.
It’s about that feeling of being in a rink for the first time since last season. It’s eating something fried and bad for you because that’s what you’ve ate at the game since you can remember. It’s handing the puck you just caught at the game to the youngest kid in the aisle because it’s the right thing to do.
It is basically anything but lawyers trying to convince you how bad of a deal their clients have.
And we allowed it to happen.
So if June comes around and there’s no Stanley Cup celebration (or riots if you’ve had a few too many Granville Islands after some twins let you down), remember that if we want hockey to be “strong and viable” and to ensure the “integrity and future” of our sport, we need to let these snobs go and find our own third way.
If we keep putting it in these guys hands well be the ones let down.
They’ll keep selling their version of our game. We need to show them what it actually is.