Who’s to blame for the Vancouver Riot?

That’s the big question that Vancouver’s political leaders and wannabee leaders are jousting over these days.

For the past week, there’s been a wide variety of reports that have popped up in the papers over who’s the most to blame for the riot. Critics of Vancouver City Hall are pointing the finger at the Mayor and senior management of the City of Vancouver, declaring that they should have a) read more 15 year old reports surrounding the riot in 1994 and b) may have attempted to save money on policing by skimping on funding the cops for heightened security in the lead up to the big game.

CityCaucus.com, well known as a civic attack blog, has been burning the midnight oil to brand Mayor Robertson with the “Robertson’s Riot”. After years of banging away at the “Vision machine” on bike lanes, chicken coups, donor politics and Vision’s other environmental measures, they finally appear to believe they have a winning issue. However a new poll released yesterday by my firm (Peak Communicators) and NRG Research Group seems to show that despite consistent attempts to blame the city and VPD by opponents (and segments of the media), the public still placing the lion’s share of blame for the riot on certain agitators, onlookers, booze and people from outside of town.

In their survey, NRG Research Group completed 400 random telephone surveys in the City of Vancouver on June 20.

In the survey, respondents rated different organizations or groups on their level of responsibility for the riot. The top five responses all related to the crowd that gathered to view the game with respondents rating responsibility for the riot from 0 to 10, with 0 “Not at all Responsible” and 10 “Totally Responsible”. Full list is below.


Responsibility rating on a scale from 0  to 10 for

Mean out of 10

Committed agitators who intended to make trouble after the game?


Excess alcohol consumption?


Young people from other parts of the lower mainland?


Crowd members who just got caught up in the moment?


Curious onlookers who did not leave when trouble started?


The City of Vancouver?


The Vancouver Police Department?


The Government of BC?


The CBC is for showing the game outside on large screens?


The Vancouver Canucks?


The big question is how these sentiments will change in the coming month.

This entry was posted in 1000 Community Stories, Local, Politics & Leadership, The Latest and tagged , , , , , , , , by Kurt Heinrich. Bookmark the permalink.

About Kurt Heinrich

Who are you? I work as a storyteller. In my spare time I like to volunteer on a variety of environmental and political initiatives as well as help coordinate a soccer team based in the Downtown Eastside. What do you do for fun? I like to cook, cycle, read, chillax, eat French and Japanese food, play with my friends, shoot the breeze with my mom, dad and sisters, explore new and interesting communities, sip the Bump and Grind's delicious Clover brew, and spend time with my lovely red headed partner Theo. What’s your favorite community and why? Right now my favorite community is the Drive. It's hip, happening and varied hosting people as diverse as a Deloitte consultant (you know who you are...) to a stick twirling, leather-homemade-clothes-wearing dude known as "Cloud Man".

4 thoughts on “Who’s to blame for the Vancouver Riot?

  1. Interesting! You could say the glass was half full, though. What does a responsibility rating of 4.9 for the City mean? Does it mean that 49% of respondents replied 10 (entirely responsible) and 51% replied 0? Probably not that extreme, but my point is that substantial numbers of people may place a substantial amount of responsibility on Vision and Penny Ballem.

    At any rate, I don’t really see how the general public is in a position to assess this. If the police said to the city “Look, we’re going to need more money to staff this thing properly” or “It’s a bad idea to have one huge fan zone” and the city ignored the advice of the police, then I think City Hall’s share of the blame goes way up. However, I don’t know how we’ll get an answer to this sort of question- presumably the police chief is not just going to drop the mayor in it.

  2. Come on folks lets place blame where blame is due – the parents of all these rioters looters lookers and losers are squarely to blame. They obviously never instilled any sort of morals in their ilk; they never taught them to respect anything or anyone nor did the teach them that there are consequences to their actions.

    Now there are basically three types of people involved with the riots- those that are just naturally low-Q’s and thugs, those that are closet thieves and those who might be redeemable, got caught up in the crowd power and are truly ashamed (…that they got caught).

    They all began life the same way – through copulation, one egg one sperm just the same as the rest of us who somehow do not feel the need to act out and embarrass ourselves in front of the world.

    The difference between them and those of us who contribute to the world is their upbringing.
    Most probably came from little Suzy Creamcheese who spread her legs without benefit of contraception in the hope that giving it up to some scumbag would bring her love and the possibility of a successful and happy life in a double-wide. Of course if her baby daddy didn’t take off as soon as she told him she was pregnant guaranteed he left a few short years later when she got too fat to be attractive by even his low standards. This process was probably repeated at least once more with Suzy looking for someone to supply her with cigarettes and pot because baby daddies one two and three were not paying their support payments and welfare only goes so far. Suzy was far too busy either looking for love or smoking it up with her welfare sisters complaining about her ex(es) to pay much attention to the little rug-rats that were crawling around the trailer eating Cheerio’s off the floor. Some years later when these same rats started bringing home other kid’s skateboards and bikes it was easier to ignore the fact they were not going to be the pillars of society than to deal with it.

    Now not all of the cretins involved in the riots came from a background of single fat mom too lazy to work; some of them came from hard working immigrants who came to Canada to provide a better life for their children – a life where looters aren’t shot on sight and the penalty for stealing does not incarcerate them in prison or labour camps for ten years. How sad that they worked so hard to give their children the opportunity for success that they somehow missed the mark by not instilling values like honesty, integrity and respect.

    Then there are those “normally really good people who got caught up in something and really really can’t believe they did that” lowlifes that are shocked we can’t quite forgive them because gosh darn they just made a mistake. They come from successful mostly two parent families – the kind with little white decals showing mom dad kids and the family pets on the back window of the mini-van. They have had the benefit of soccer hockey little league gymnastics etc. and Mom and Dad have been out to support them at all their games, recitals etc. Unfortunately what they haven’t had is the benefit of a smack on their bottoms when the deserved it, literally or figuratively. They weren’t taught that bad behavior could get them more than a “time-out” in real life. These are the same kids that mom and dad would give a wad of money to on Friday nights and tell them to have fun but be good, the kids that walk around in groups kicking in fences. They would never dream of kicking in fences when on their own but the power they feel in the group easily overrides the weak sense of responsibility and accountability instilled by their parents.

    We need to give these losers the education their parents failed to provide. We need to teach them that there are consequences. The courts will be pathetically lenient so since stoning is illegal public shaming is really the best recourse at this time. Keep their names and faces in the limelight. Make their parents aware of what they have cast upon society. However IF the miscreant somehow can atone for their actions (financial commitment to their victim(s) being about the only really acceptable form of apology) then that should be made known too; Little Johnny will pay $10,000 towards that burned out police car that is not covered by insurance or Little Sally will pay the wages for the number of days an employee missed while the coffee shop Sally helped to trash was being repaired PLUS a contribution to the cost of the actual repairs- really this is the only way these people can regain one iota of respect from regular society. I don’t care if their parents shell out the bucks – like it or not it was their responsibility to raise their children with morals and ethics and values and they failed.

    As for those double-wide empty pocket dirtballs and their equally loser parents the only way they can give back at all is to use contraception – every time.

  3. I was just looking for this information for some time. After 6 hours of continuous Googleing, at last I got it in your web site. I wonder what’s the lack of Google strategy that don’t rank this kind of informative sites in top of the list. Usually the top web sites are full of garbage.
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  4. Pingback: Youth, Riots, Rwanda, and Ridiculousness | The Potentiality

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