The Guardian’s Matthew Good feels all the benefits from the Olympics have now been wiped out and seems to be blaming something systemic in the city itself – or at least that will be the optics in the aftermath:
And that’s the hard, cold, truth of it, no matter how cosmopolitan you believe this city to now be. If the Olympics succeeded in charming the pants off the world, that warm, fuzzy feeling has now been decimated.
I’m in no mood to start slicing pies. Whether you like it or not, what’s happening right now will be viewed as a representation of the city as a whole – not merely a handful of people. And even then, it’s not just a handful of people. Of course, alcohol has a great deal to do with it. When you mix booze with idiocy and an excuse to parade incivility what do you honestly expect, a spontaneous love-in?
Perhaps some BC readers would like to weigh in on this. Should police have handled this differently? Have they been hamstrung by the G20 fallout?
What went wrong?
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Canada AM just interviewed blogger Rebecca Bollwitt who is trying to help police ID those responsible for the destruction. Please check out her site and Twitter feed.
More at Full Comment from Brian Hutchinson who was there – Blood on the streets after Vancouver loss:
Two Vancouver Police Department spokespeople made themselves available to media. They stood outside the Sears building, a block south of West Georgia.
“Where are your officers?” I asked Constable Jana McGuinness.
“We have a full public safety unit deployed right now,” she said. “We have hundreds of officers, a full deployment. They’re all over.” Well, no, they weren’t. Some were standing in a circle a few metres from the constable, but they still weren’t out in force on West Georgia Street. I’m not blaming police for what happened this night. But did they not anticipate the worst?
They should have. Because a lot of us did. Because something is fundamentally wrong in the city and the surrounding region. A riot after Game Seven in 1994. A riot after a rock concert. A silly episode of street violence early on, during the 2010 Olympic Winter Games. Look, I was in Calgary in 2004, on the Red Mile, and Game Seven didn’t work out too well there, either. And there might — might — have been a broken pane of glass at the end of all of that.