The IX: Hockey Friday with Erica L. Ayala, January 29, 2021

Two certainties of WoHo are bigotry and pettiness - Interview with Brooke Stacey- must-click links

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Two certainties of WoHo are bigotry and pettiness

It’s without fail.

I will not be driving traffic to the specific person(s) or outlet sucking attention from women’s hockey, but you can watch the press release Ty Tumminia gave on the matter.

Since the press release and the official statement that preceded it, the outlet and its minions (including a slew of women’s hockey players) have bravely held the line to defend racism, bigotry, and idiotic behavior. While it’s absolutely wild to witness and has strong 45 vibes, it’s far from surprising.

Like we saw in Tulsa in 1921, or in 1955 Chicago because a boy named Emmitt Till whistled at a white woman — both the result of trumped-up claims of victimhood, by the way — white men have digitally weaponized against the NWHL and its supporters.

“It’s important to people understanding how the word of a white person against a black person was law, and a lot of black people lost their lives because of it. It really speaks to history, it shows what black people went through in those days.”

Wheeler Parker, Cousin of Emmitt Till, New York Times

This is what I’m thinking as this unfolds, as a grown white man from a glorified frat house of an outlet says Saroya Tinker should be jailed for calling out his company and employees for perpetuating racism.

These adults could easily say… nothing! Absolutely nothing. Better yet, they could listen to BIPOC people instead of pretending to be affronted about the truth.

And miss me with someone who embraces the name Token CEO not being the problem. This person benefits from the excitement created by the bigotry and blatant racism spouted. Is she saying it publicly? I honestly don’t know. Is she stomping it out? Hell no!

So that’s the bigotry part. Here’s the pettiness:

People are using hashtags to “free” the Token CEO and NWHL players Rebecca Russo and Kelly Babstock, who appeared on her podcast in-person ahead of the NWHL single site season. What’s more, in an effort to prove there is no NWHL vs. PWHPA divide, PW players have invited to this outlet to join them to build a sustainable league. Other retired or inactive players are posting GIF of popcorn, presumably entertained by the drama.

I’m really glad y’all think this shit is funny! I have people trolling me despite me never mentioning this outlet or individual, ever! Folks think it’s cute to comment on post of me living my everyday life.

It’s pathetic!

The hypocrisy of players supporting a company over their own colleagues and then tweeting #BellLetsTalk is just too much for me. I wrote earlier this month about the heavy toll racism takes on one’s mental and emotional state. I wrote:

We are at the point where others must enter the conversation. No gesture of kneeling, jersey patch, shirt or other show of material support can replace what I need. I need to feel understood. I need to feel seen, appreciated, and loved in this moment.

While some may read or hear white supremacy and think that’s harsh, well. The reality is that imperialism and white supremacy have fueled a lot of what governs our society, both by way of the social code and the rule of law.

We must all confront this and accept it, including accepting that being in the United States (and especially being born in the United States) makes us beneficiaries of this ugly truth. It is also true that perpetuating this truth makes its reality less accessible to certain communities.

While the bigotry and pettiness are often the loudest voices, they are not nearly the most consistent. There is a lot to deal with, including COVID (mini-thread on that in the links), but there is progress as well.

The frat house outlet will eventually lose interest or perhaps themselves discover running a women’s hockey league is tough. In the meantime, WoHo needs to make good on its commitment to talk about racism and hate in a real way.

I know there have been conversations happening. Yet, it might be time to move some of those conversations into the light and begin the lead the charge. If you constantly find yourself back checking, it might be time to reassess your positioning.

As for Saroya Tinker, she’s leading from the front!

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This Week in Women’s Hockey

DO YOU BELIEVE IN MORE COVERAGE FOR WOMEN IN SPORTS? Good, click these links and show decision-makers that if you post it, we will read it! If you have any hot tips for great stories or voices you’d like to see in The IX, email me:

Must-Click Links

MINI Thread: Riveters pull out of Izzy Cup contention after team reports multiple positive tests.

The league never officially announced COVID protocol, but in an interview for the Founding 4 Podcast, Anya Packer noted a team would be disqualified from competition of they fell under a certain number of players.

Ahead of the season, I asked for league confirmation on that policy/number, they did not provide any information. Sources tell me teams need at least 15 players to remain in competition.

The Ice Garden reported Rebecca Russo and head coach Ivo Mocek left the bench during the Riveters 1-0 loss to Minnesota Tuesday night. Russo was one of two players who gave an in-person interview days before leaving for Lake Placid. Neither Russo, teammate Kelly Babstock, or the host were wearing masks.

Dr. Courtney Szto with a great overview of the latest NWHL (and not WoHo) drama.

Jocelyne Larocque named Manitoba Indigenous Female Athlete of the Decade.

Marisa Ingemi joins Tara Sloan to chat NWHL on Top of her Game.

Madison Packer swag!!!

Erin Ambrose on overcoming mental health challenges.

Maine on pause through February 4.

Boston University on pause through end of January.

Team Canada catches up with Jayna Hefford.

Toronto Six get first win in NWHL franchise history.

The NWHL plots a path to viability.

A look into the #NDubble from the perspective of the Boston Pride.

Tweet of the Week

Great advice from one of the newest ancestors.

Five at The IX: NWHL Players on Ending Racism

I sat down with Buffalo Beauts forward and new mom Brooke Stacey about returning to the ice and taking a knee.

Mondays: Soccer
By: Annie Peterson, @AnnieMPeterson AP Women’s Soccer
Tuesdays: Tennis
By Joey Dillon, @JoeyDillon Freelance Tennis Writer
Wednesdays: Basketball
By: Howard Megdal, @HowardMegdal The Next
Thursdays: Golf
By Sarah Kellam @sarahkellam, The IX
Fridays: Hockey
By: Erica Ayala, @ELindsay08 NWHL Broadcaster

Written by Erica L. Ayala