A political crusade by a ‘vocal minority’

By R&BAvenger

Since the Christchurch attacks, I’ve been heartened by the response from my fellow citizens here in my home town. There was the spontaneous outpouring of grief and support for the victims and their families. The events of the past ten years have given us plenty of time to be ever more grateful for what we have including those things that are important to us not only as individuals, but also collectively as a city and as a province.

The Canterbury Crusaders have a proud history of success since 1996. They have won 9 titles, been finalists 14 times and semifinalists 18 times. They are also the only Super Rugby team to complete a whole season undefeated.

The Crusaders have been well supported by the Canterbury public and continue to be a team with a strong, positive history of teamwork and success: things that Canterbury is known for.

The team and franchise are an important symbol for people to come together and get behind, regardless of age, race, religion and cultural background.

They were a shining light during the dark times after the 2010 and 2011 earthquakes that devastated Canterbury so badly and helped bring and keep us all together as we worked to rebuild our proud city and province.

Now the city has suffered another tragedy.

The response by the Christchurch, Canterbury and New Zealand communities has been phenomenal and uplifting. It is a true reflection of who we are as a people, as a nation and as a province. Yet there is a vocal minority using this event as an excuse to drive their own political and cultural agenda. To force through change, to create division, supposedly in the spirit of ‘diversity’.

I’m saddened that Crusaders’ management and the NZRU have allowed politicians and ‘woke’ left wing media types and their ‘woke’ vocal supporters on social media to drive this change.

The knee-jerk response by Steve Tew saying the name is untenable, before any consultation with the fans or the people of Canterbury gives the impression that minds are already made up and this is just a box-ticking exercise.

The various polls run on Newshub, Stuff, the NZ Herald, TVNZ and Breakfast are overwhelmingly against a name change.

This push to change the name of our world?s most successful non-international professional rugby team smacks of political convenience and emotion. Management at the Crusaders and NZ Rugby are scared of a social media backlash.

The backlash from fans will be much worse if they kowtow to a vocal minority. Just look at how the NFL fans in the USA responded to players bringing politics into the game by choosing to kneel during the national anthem.

The relevant phrase in relation to this sort of weak-kneed response to left wing socialist hand-wringing and grandstanding is “Get woke, go broke”.
Even local Muslims in Christchurch have indicated that they do not want to be part of this.

It is white liberal, chardonnay socialists, who arrogantly presume to represent Muslims, that are driving this. In doing so, they will only taint the outpouring of goodwill and love from the Christchurch and Canterbury community, and drive people apart, rather than keep them together.

Listen to Abdul, a survivor of the Linwood mosque attack, who texted and called Magic Talk radio to express his view.

One of Australia?s most vocal Muslim community leaders has also urged the Crusaders Super Rugby club not to change its name.
This is evidence that the push to change is not being driven by the Muslim community. Crusaders management and the NZ Rugby union are being played. Who are Colin Mansbridge and Steve Tew listening to? Obviously not the New Zealand public. Both need to resign over this divisive misjudgement.

Will they be looking into changing the name, imagery and branding of the Chiefs as well?

Will they be questioning the ABs’ use of the haka?

What about St John? A service that has its origins in 1070, when a place of care was established in Jerusalem by Benedictine monks for the growing number of Christians making the long and dangerous pilgrimage to the holy city.
Would the modern ambulance service of the Order of St John, who provided an immediate response for the victims of the mosque attacks, now be required to change their name as well?

The Crusades were a series of religious wars between Christians and Muslims started primarily to secure control of holy sites considered sacred by both groups.

The Canterbury Crusaders’ name refers to their concerted effort and campaign to win a new Super Rugby title. There’s a saying in sports, that you don’t change a winning formula. The Crusaders have a strong history and winning formula that has led to internationally recognised success.

The branding, the name, the associated visuals and theatrics are part of that winning formula. Lancaster Park used to be the home and fortress of the Canterbury Crusaders. The city is planning a new sports stadium that will become the home of this successful franchise and its formula. A branding change will put this in jeopardy. Management must not succumb to the vocal minority. They must support what the majority of fans and people want.

Recall our National Anthem ?In the bonds of love we meet? ? it is in that spirit that the people of Christchurch and the New Zealand community rallied around the victims and family members on 15th March 2019.
And that spirit that brings the same community together in support of our Super Rugby team. Where people regardless of age, gender, culture, religion or politics can unite to support our local and national representatives.
We need love, not the divisive, knee-jerk reactions of politicians and administrators who are all too ready to throw our culture and traditions aside in a spineless surrender delivering victory to extremists encouraging them to commit even more of these atrocities.

Stand firm, change nothing.
This is not just a sports team. This is our city, our province and our culture.