Is the Carolina Hurricanes’ Statement Enough of a Stand?

(Photo by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images)
(Photo by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images) /

The Carolina Hurricanes have put out a statement about the protests.

The Carolina Hurricanes are one of the 30 teams to have put out a statement about the protests. While it is better than most statements put out there, is it enough?

I have not hidden who I am or my stance on racial justice or the injustices faced by the minority communities across the United States and Canada. Hockey has had more than it’s share of racism and exclusivity when it comes to these minority communities.

Players of color have been subjugated to harsh treatment, unfair contracts, and bounced around from team to team no matter how good they are. We have allowed racism and racists to manage, control, and dictate how this sport does business. If not by direct action, then by indirect inaction. By not speaking out against them and even going as far as defending them.

I have spoken out against them before and I will continue to speak out against them now. If you find it uncomfortable to talk about, consider how it must feel to go through it. What it is like to be consistently reminded that you are fighting an uphill battle by simply existing in a space. What it is like to wonder if you can ever really have a future, or will it be usurped from you.

Like it was usurped from George Floyd.

So when Every team began to craft their messages of support to the protests and protesters, I naturally took each one with a grain of salt and a skeptical approach. Even the Carolina Hurricanes one seen below.

Now I know what many people are thinking; Its just a hockey team, what can you really ask from them, when is enough and when will people be satisfied?

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The answer is complex. Yes, it is just a hockey team. But any sports team becomes a big leader in the community. To a degree, each sports team is an ambassador to its city. When you see someone walking around wearing a Bruins hat, you automatically think of Boston, you automatically consider what that team represents in that city.

So every statement put out in and within itself is a representation of the host city, even though technically sports teams are private establishments. That means that the statement is representative of the fanbase and its values. When I look at the statement I want it to reflect my values as a Carolina Hurricanes fan. I want it to reflect what I want the world to see in myself.

The Carolina Hurricanes statement to a degree does that. But it’s not a complete statement. They do have their Twitter Bio set to “Black Lives Matter” which is a complementary statement but there is always more that can be said.

Actions however speak louder than words. And the Carolina Hurricanes have plenty of opportunities ahead to take the right actions to help out the communities stuck by injustices, or as Jaccob Slavin would put it, choose the side of justice:

At the end of the day, we have to wait to see what will and won’t happen. The Carolina Hurricanes have a good track record with things like Pride Night. But this is still the organization that hired newly noted racist head coach Bill Peters up until two seasons ago. I want to believe they will do the right thing moving forward. Only they can prove me right or wrong.

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