Mansplaining Isn’t Cool, Guys.

WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 25: A broken hockey stick is seen during an NHL game during the third period at Capital One Arena on February 25, 2023 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 25: A broken hockey stick is seen during an NHL game during the third period at Capital One Arena on February 25, 2023 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) /

Alright, Caniacs. Over the weekend I wrote an article about Tony DeAngelo (who I’m sure we’re all tired of hearing about by now and will later be referred to as TDA) mansplaining how I think he is problematic. In this context, I was referring to previous behaviors that he exhibited in hopes that he does not repeat them his second go round in Carolina. It blew up on Twitter, but definitely not in a positive manner. While Ben and Chris have written similar articles (and I appreciate them sticking up for me), I’m going to speak for myself.

Some of the comments I received on Twitter (the majority of whom were from men) included things like “This article is just a woman throwing around big words to sound important,” ”The author joined Twitter in 2023, so I assumed they also became a hockey fan in 2023 as well. [DeAngelo] was loved by Canes fans and this author just hates his politics. Deal with it,” and ”It’s like she doesn’t realize he was already on the [Canes] and played well.”

Even better, I received an email that said things such as “You stand for the advancement of your career as long as it coincides with your woke beliefs,” “I’m afraid you’re barking up the wrong tree with the Hurricanes,” “The Hurricanes neither need or want you,” “I guess you know better than Jordan [Staal] and Rod [Brind’Amour] and Don [Waddell] and Tom [Dundon],” and calling me a “redheaded kid.”

Mansplaining is defined as “explaining something to a woman in a condescending way that assumes she has no knowledge about the topic.” Unfortunately, what has happened is a prime example of that. To address some comments, I have been a hockey fan practically since I was a baby and still have my outfits that I wore. Because I started writing about hockey this year, I joined Twitter around the same time to promote my content. I always spend at least a few hours on my writing because I always want to share my best work. This includes not just coming up with ideas, but also researching to make sure that I am putting out correct information. If I make any mistakes, I sincerely apologize for them and keep that in mind for my next piece.

I was fully aware that TDA played in Carolina before and acknowledged that. I also acknowledged his abilities as a defenseman. I definitely don’t know more about the Hurricanes than their coaching staff and players, which is why I fact check as I write. While I am progressive, politics were not why I criticized TDA. I was just pointing out things that have happened that cause some fans such as myself to disagree with him. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, and nobody has to agree with me. I don’t expect you to, nor was I trying to force my beliefs on others or pit anyone against each other.

Realistically, the Hurricanes have no idea who I am so how could they need or want me? I’m just some redheaded adult with a keyboard and Internet access. I’m cool with that because both allow me to express myself through writing. There is no wrong tree on which to bark up when you are pursuing something you’re interested in, unless you like hurting animals for example. I’m not worried about career advancement because I just started working and graduated from college this year, but it will happen one day because I am a hard worker.

The hardest thing about being a contributor for Cardiac Cane, in my experience, has been being a woman in a male-dominated industry. I don’t say that for pity points, it’s an unfortunate truth because things like this happen and when I defend myself, I am dismissed, sent mansplaining  emails and not taken seriously. I will say that I am surprised no metal fans were gatekeeping me when I mentioned Gojira in a previous Ave’s Faves feature, knock on wood.

To criticize my writing is one thing, but to personally attack me and my fellow contributors is another. There is a fine line between constructive criticism and mansplaining. There is, however, a large line between criticism and direct personal attacks. Personally emailing me or anyone else to berate us is harassment and that line should never be crossed. Male hockey fans, you need to be better. Accept that people have different opinions than you and that a woman is not only knowledgeable about the sport, but writes about it as well.