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Photo Credit: @NHL on Twitter

This is not the end.

Saturday August 29th at 12:30pm. 

The day and time the NHL is officially back in action. Let me tell you why we shouldn’t be rushing to forget the events of the past three days. 

Before I get into that, I ask that you folks take some time to read this piece by Omar from Pension Plan Puppets, as well as this open letter to the NHL by Matthew Henriques, if you haven’t already. 

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These past couple days have been a lot in the hockey world.

From a lack of action from the league and players the day sports took a pause. Excuses of napping or not enough time to plan for a stop, even though there were hours from when the Bucks didn’t take the court to the Tampa/Boston game. Some folks are in a bubble both literally and figuratively. Re: Alain Vigneault

It caused an uproar which then phased into a moment of reflection. 

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Mind you this moment of reflection only lasted about 33 seconds. 

And it wasn’t even carried over into the Dallas/Colorado game. 

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The lack of consistency and lack of simple care brought upon a boycott by fans, 

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And more recently an actual player strike. 

We saw growth. We saw accountability and we saw true allyship. 

Allowing the HDA the space to educate across the board is an amazing feat and a great way to start. Having said that, the onus should not always be on Black folks and PoC to teach you. It can be extremely exhausting. In this context though, I truly believe it was the right thing to do. It helped to keep the conversation going. 

While what we saw was groundbreaking for the NHL, it was not nearly enough. 

Kayla Grey puts it perfectly when she asks if the NHL is here to stay:

This thread dives into the reactions of team socials after the player strike was confirmed.

It’s not the most promising. 

Sam Carchidi does a great job of erasing the work put in at media availability. 

I said it in a tweet and I’ll say it again. The fact that someone, in this case Carchidi, tried to ask a question related to hockey in a time where the players did not want to talk about hockey is a problem. Talk about hockey at morning skate the next day, DO NOT talk about hockey in the two days that players are trying to bring attention to the social injustices of the world. 

The President of the Vegas PD Police Union voices his disappointment in the team’s actions.

The Dallas Stars losing big name clients after Dickinson and Seguin first kneeled.

This is not the end. We are nowhere near it for that matter. The NHL and the hockey community have a lot of work to do. I urge you all to continue to do the research, educate yourselves, have these conversations with your family and friends. Do not be a bystander, it only causes more pain in the end. If you have privilege whether that be because of the white of your skin, or because you are a cis man in this society based on the patriarchy. Use that privilege to uplift the voices of the BIPOC that otherwise would not have a platform. Do not take up space, but rather make space for us to speak our truth and our lives experiences. Put in the work so you can be an ally. And remember, the word ally is not a noun. It is a verb in every sense of the word. It is not a title to be claimed, but instead it  is an honour that is given to you by folks in marginalized communities. Take that honour with grace, with drive and determination so that we can keep fighting the good fight. Anti-Black racism and racism as a whole will not be eradicated in a day, it takes time, hard work and dedication to the cause. 

It’s a movement, not a moment. 

This is only the beginning. 

#BlackLivesMatter