Technology is a crazy thing.
Decisions that we have made, past or present, are saved forever in a virtual cloud. Most of the time these things go unnoticed or forgotten, never to be seen in the eye of the public. And, most of the time, these private conversations would not cause the public to bat an eye.
Then, like what has happened with Brendan Leipsic and some friends from Winnipeg, a conversation goes public, accusations are made, apologies are written, reactions pile up, the involved are reprimanded, and things usually carry on as normal.
This course of action cannot continue down this path.
There are a number of things that bother me about this scenario. First and foremost, it’s the disrespect and misogyny that is exemplified through the group chat messages. I know it’s a private place, but there is no room for such a disgusting display.
Secondly, hockey players, and athletes in general, have been painted in this light for as long as I can remember. As soon as things seem to get better, something like this pops up and we are back to square one. It sucks to see something like this happen and now hockey players everywhere are painted in the same, ghastly light.
Thirdly, I realize that men are the leaders in this world of demeaning and degrading other people. This talk is unacceptable and needs to change, but it does not start and stop with male athletes. This is not just a male problem, it’s a people problem. Male, female, or other, we need to be better when it comes to treating other people.
This is a quick, hard-hitting rant, but we need to be better.
This could happen to anyone. If messages from your phone were leaked, would you be okay with what the world sees? If yes, keep being a light in this uphill battle. If no, start respecting others the way you would like to be respected.
Lessons like these happen far too often. Here’s to hoping that we actually start to learn.