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When will the NHL and the Chicago Blackhawks get it?
The Blackhawks raised the championship banner, as they are allowed to do, but the occasion felt hollow to many in the wake of the Patrick Kane rape allegations. The feeling of hollowness transitioned to one of rage and disgust as Kane proceeded to participate in the hooking the banner to the scaffolding to raise it to the rafters.
Both the league and the team failed to take the lead in order to show they care about violence against women by doing something as small as acknowledging the growing trend among their ranks. Instead they stuck their heads in the sand as they 'respect the process of the investigation.'
Fans exercised their right to protest the ceremony by using the hashtag created by the Blackhawks, #RaiseTheBanner, and adding an hashtag #NotMyNHL, to discuss the topic of sexual assault. Tweets addressed in the series ranged from staggering sexual assault statistics to phone numbers and locations of crisis networks to the expression of anger, dismay and support.
Many of the tweets are difficult to read because the conversation about sexual assault is one that not people are comfortable having. You can find the Tweets from the night at the link below, but please be aware of potential triggers those sensitive to sexual assault and domestic violence discussion.
For a social media sector that is genuinely very polarized, this was the real banner raising of the night. Sure there were the detractors, as there have been all along in the process, but tonight their voices were overshadowed by those who believe social change. Just a handful of those proponents are featured below:
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