I’ve been thinking about the Vancouver Riots all day, today. My friends have been twittering about it and one of my friends, Sarah Edmondson, found out that her car was one of the vehicles to get completely destroyed in the riots.
I used to live in Vancouver. To be honest, it was one of the most amazing, beautiful, and friendly cities I have ever lived in. My experience there was that people were busy going about their day-to-day lives and that they supported peace and neutrality for the most part. They believe in helping their fellow man… most of them. So when I started to get accounts last night of the riot, it shocked me. I read that there was a riot in 1994 as well, and so it’s not surprising. I’d been inundated with tweets for the weeks leading up to the Stanley cup by actress Katie Sackoff tweeting “#GOBRUINS” twelve times a day, so the fact that this was a big big event also didn’t elude me.
What did elude me at first however, was the consideration that there is something deep deep down inside of people in our world that would cause them to use a situation such as this to justify their feelings of insecurity and choose to destroy items of that takes much effort to produce. I mean think about all of the effort that goes into the cars, and all of the other items that were destroyed last night… It’s not just Sarah’s efforts, but it’s that of the people who employ her, and the people who employ them. THEN, it’s the people who made the car, and the people who run the company to make the car. THEN it’s the people who buy the products that support the people who make the car. Think, for a moment, of the efforts of the people who spent countless hours paving that beautiful parkade, where her car was parked. Think of all of the people who spent their hard earned efforts in building the area around the parkade. Think, more, on the people who supported the rioters only hours to minutes before the riots began; the hard work that went into building up the beautiful city of Vancouver, to support the wonderfully kind citizens of that city.
And then… there’s just that one moment… the moment where something big happened– something big and not prideful for some. There’s the people who would dare to pick up an object and destroy it by destroying another object. What goes on inside for this person to be the person to start this? More and more people join in because they’re scared, it’s fun, they’re too drunk, they need to record it, get it on camera, smile and say cheese, etc. Whatever the excuse is, what goes on for a person to destroy something that they didn’t earn, when ordinarily that same person would think twice about opening that same car door if they notice the light is left on if this were any other day.
What goes on for an individual who stands there and watches it happen, and doesn’t say anything. That person is, after all, making a choice to be part of this action by choosing no action.
I watched a YouTube video of a “Brave Vancouver Citizen” who stands up to a group of people who are taking their joys out on someone else’s efforts. This person stops the smashing, at least momentarily, and the city is that much better for this action.
What will it take for more brave citizens like this person to take a stand and say “This is OUR city. What are you DOING?”
I am seeking to work towards a better humanity. A humanity that will stand to expose an injustice and bring it to light and inspire others to choose their path; that of supporting destruction or that of supporting humanity and creation. Join me?