Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Riots in the 514

The Canadiens beat the Bruins 5-0 here in Montreal last night and have advanced to the second round of the playoffs. This is big enough news to kick-start a bit of a riot not too far from our house, right by Matt's school. Some police cars were burned, and some shops were broken into. You can see a photo essay here.

I also watched some videos of the scene on YouTube, and more than anything it was the comments that pissed me off. The riot was blamed not on drunken hockey fans but on immigrants, blacks, Arabs, and anglos. That's right; it was all my fault. I'm an anglo immigrant. I have no right to be here, and I am to blame for all post-hockey game riots and anything else that tarnishes the good name of Montreal or la belle province.

I know that not all Montrealers and Quebecers are as ignorant, blatantly racist and inhospitable as some of the commenters on YouTube (because, really, judging society by YouTube comments is very sad), but the truth is that that same ignorance, racism, and arrogance exist in a very real way here, and being a part of the unwelcome minority gets to be exhausting sometimes.

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