Saturday, March 24, 2012

Intent to Injure

 What troubles me most is the seemingly bi-polar nature of the reaction of fans to the issue of 'intent to injure'. Your paper recently ran a compelling series on the life and death of hockey enforcer Derek Boogaard. It brought into clear focus the reality of the consequences of a sport that not only tolerates but encourages mayhem for its own sake. And yet where is the public outcry, the political investigation into this spectacle that has little to do with the sport and everything to do with the demands of the customer?

In recent days the Rangers and Devils literally squared off within 3 seconds of the puck being dropped. 3 separate brawls took place, simultaneously, to the delight of most of those gathered. How can we applaud the actions of Commissioner Goodell and yet wildly applaud the intent to injure on the ice? What is it that allows us to find football must have boundaries and severe repercussions for purposeful violence, but hockey's penalty box is punishment enough for those who would rather fight than switch to a game that outlaws such actions. Whereas the world of bounties was hidden in the locker room of the NFL, the direction to take out another player is evident to even the most casual fan in hockey.

So, the question of the day is what makes us repulsed by the actions of the New Orlean Saints and drawn to the blood on the ice? Who are we really?

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