But, Rugby!

Written By: - Date published: 10:55 am, April 7th, 2019 - 134 comments
Categories: Christchurch Attack, Social issues, sport, terrorism - Tags: , ,

I’m in two minds about the proposed name change for the Super Rugby franchise the Canterbury Crusaders.

On one hand, it seems like a reasonable and considered response to the Mosque tragedies.

On the other hand, it should never have been the name in the first place and the RFU owes all New Zealanders an apology for choosing it in 1996 and ignoring the muted criticism of the choice ever since.

Just as a reminder, the crusades were repeated attempt by religious fanatics to commit genocide against adherents of a different faith.

There has never been anything positive about the name crusaders, nor is there an innocent use of it.

It is the glorification of war, a celebration of mass murder.

It has taken the death of 50 innocent people to wake NZ rugby up to their complicity in bigotry.

However, it’s really obvious that the average rugby head still hasn’t made the link between the offensive nature of the crusader name and the events of March 15.

Sympathy for the dead only goes so far. If it affects rugby in even the smallest way, then all rationality goes out the window.

Just to be clear, the name wasn’t chosen by fans; it was a marketing exercise.

And franchise clubs regularly change names, colours and even home towns. The Washington Bullets are probably the nearest example of a club responding to a community crisis, changing name to the Washington Wizards in 1997.

It’s simply no big deal to switch to the Canterbury Plainsman (or my own suggestion, the Canterbury Courage).

But, rugby ….

 

 

 

134 comments on “But, Rugby! ”

  1. Rae 1

    The day after the incident, I saw a couple of Stuff headlines close together, one was about the massacre, the other about the Crusaders/Highlanders game being canceled and it immediately struck me the name may no longer be tenable. I mentioned in a group on fb I subscribe to and I think I might have been one of the first to make the connection and say something about it. I got ripped to shreds.

    I’ve grown to think if that was all it was, the historical meaning of the term, then maybe it could survive, but minus the imagery. (I love horses so I thought they could do some sort of display with Kaimanawas to promote the adoption of them, knowing full well that would never fly).

    People were coming with all sorts of ludicrous stuff such as Hurricanes would need to change their name because people die in hurricanes, can’t have the Blues because depression and on and on.

    I had read that thing in jail had traveled around the world, including visits to sites of the old crusades and something else began to occur to me. He sees himself as a crusader on some sort of modern crusade but in the original sense of the word. So I delved a bit deeper.

    It seems these white supremacist shits do see themselves as just that.

    It also seems that the guns used were painted with all sorts of symbols and stuff, one of which was “Acre 1189” and that was a particular siege during the crusades where the crusaders routed the Saracens. It began to occur to me then, that it is entirely possible that shit chose Christchurch very purposely, because of the Canterbury Crusaders.

    Anyone can find what I found, and it’s made me realise the team name is untenable now, but it just might take a bit of time for much of the reason why to sink in. The trial may well reveal more.

    Forget about the historical aspect, that is long gone, but the connection today is very real and I imagine white supremacists around the world will see the retention of the name as some sort of victory for them.

  2. Rae 2

    PS I suggest the name Canterbury Peacemakers (yes, I know there was a revolver called a Colt Peacemaker) but I think that name would be something they could be proud of, because that day and in the days after that is exactly what we did. You could hold your head high with that name.

  3. marty mars 3

    Imo pretty well all of those brands for super rugby are weak and useless. The brand loyalty argument is pathetic and disingenuous. Change it dickheads and change it now.

    • Dukeofurl 3.1

      NZRU has said it will change, as we are halfway through season , next year gives them time to find a new one

      • mauī 3.1.1

        I think they are just buying for time…

        I haven’t heard the NZRU say it WILL change the name. They are investigating it and looking at two options, changing the logo or changing the name.

    • solkta 3.2

      “The Canterbury Dickheads”

      Sounds good to me.

  4. Dukeofurl 4

    But its not a canterbury only team either , as it includes the Westcoast , nelson marlbourough unions as well.
    Thats why my choice is the giant eagle which lived in the Northern South Island, the Pouakai or Haast eagle.

    With these sports team brandings – which is what they are- you usually like to have emblem as well as the name. ‘Courage’ doesnt supply both.

  5. millsy 5

    How about calling the team “Christchurch City”, so people actually know where the team comes from.

    Same with the Blues — call them Auckland City, and so on.

    I never could get the point of those silly little nick names.

    Look at the Liverpool Football Club. Or Manchester United. They dont have a silly little nickname tacked on the end. They have a GEOGRAPHICAL LOCATION. Yes, they are called the Reds and Red Devils, but those are nicknames steeped and traditions, and used unofficially.

    And yes, we have the All Blacks, Lions and Springboks, but they are steeped in tradition, and were, as above, used unofficially.

    At least the Japanese are honest. Their club teams are owned by their corporate sponsors, and are, as such, named after them.

    • Bg 5.1

      The Crusades are a franchise representing not only Canterbury, buy Marlborough, Nelson, Westcoast and many of the smaller districts.

      • SHG 5.1.1

        The Super Rugby “franchises” are commercial operations. They will hire the employees they need for the roles they have available… wherever they come from.

    • Roy 5.2

      Because they don’t really come from there, any more than most players for Man-U et al come from those places. Maybe the home ground is there – whatever that means.

  6. WeTheBleeple 6

    Watched Invictus last night. Quite the contrast where Nelson Mandela uses rugby as a vehicle to bridge racial divides.

    To be honest, I thought it was an evil South African Rugby Union plot, to make me cheer for the Springboks beating NZ in the World Cup Final.

  7. Sanctuary 7

    As far as i can recall, Canterbury had a sheep as a mascot back in the day. This whole “Crusader” business is a 1996 branding exercise for a competition that was rushed into existence to compete with the NRL and various threatened rebel rugby competitions.

    The Crusader brand has past it’s use by date. Brands can change their packaging to suit changing times, and the Crusaders need to change pronto or every time they play, they’ll be a toxic reminder of racist terror.

  8. Just as a reminder, the crusades were repeated attempt by religious fanatics to commit genocide against adherents of a different faith.

    Only to the extent that Muslim efforts of the time to conquer Europe (eventually successful in the case of the Byzantine part of it, largely unsuccessful in western Europe) were a “repeated attempt by religious fanatics to commit genocide against adherents of a different faith.” It’s not a very accurate or useful description in either case.

    That said, Muslims recognise the word “crusaders” as referring to deadly enemies of Muslims, so if NZ Rugby insists on teams being identifying by daft names as branding exercises, it would be well advised to change that particular one. Declaring Christchurch rugby the enemy of Muslims isn’t really the brand message they’re looking for right now, surely?

    • I tried to use neutral language there, PM. I don’t think either faith can be said to have clean hands in the matter, however it was the Christians in the East and West of Europe who banded together in a coordinated attempt to drive Islam out of the Holy lands and gave the two century long campaign its name.

      • Psycho Milt 8.1.1

        And it was the Muslims of the Middle East who banded together in a coordinated attempt to drive Christianity not only out of the “Holy Lands” but also its home base of Europe, which lasted a lot longer than two centuries. The term “Jihad” should be as offensive to Whitey as “Crusade” is to Muslims, but having won in the end we have less of a chip on our shoulder about it.

        • solkta 8.1.1.1

          but having won in the end

          Say what? Do you mean capturing much of the Middle East in WW1? I don’t know, but i don’t think we are at the end yet.

          • Psycho Milt 8.1.1.1.1

            I mean the conflict between the Umma and Christendom was eventually lost by the Umma, in that “Christendom” conquered their countries rather than vice versa. Starting in the 19th Century but completed in the 20th takeover of the Ottoman possessions. “Christendom” in quotes because it effectively no longer existed by that time, having been itself defeated by secularists.

        • Dukeofurl 8.1.1.2

          Arrival of St Augustine in Britain 632 AD, supposedly the formal beginning of Christianity there.

          Muslim conquest of central Levant from the Byzantines 634-637AD
          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muslim_conquest_of_the_Levant

          • SPC 8.1.1.2.1

            Augustine of Canterbury was a Benedictine monk who became the first Archbishop of Canterbury in the year 597.

            • Grant 8.1.1.2.1.1

              Plenty of Romano-British Christians in Britain before the Saxons arrived as well.

    • mikesh 8.2

      I think the crusades were not directed against Muslims generally, but only against those who occupied the “holy land”, a land which Western nations considered sacred to Christianity, and to Judaic religions generally.

      Still I can understand why Muslims might not see it that way.

    • Phil 8.3

      …the crusades were repeated attempt by religious fanatics to commit genocide against adherents of a different faith.

      …Muslim efforts of the time to conquer Europe (eventually successful in the case of the Byzantine part of it, largely unsuccessful in western Europe) were a “repeated attempt by religious fanatics to commit genocide against adherents of a different faith.”

      It strikes me as an utterly pointless exercise trying to pinpoint a single origin or catalyst for the crusades when history simply doesn’t operate in well defined linear timelines.

      The implicit argument both of you seem to be making is that one side or the other is ultimately to blame for the crusades? That’s folly. Hell, there weren’t even clearly defined sides along religious lines for huge portions of the crusades period – the storming and sack of Christian-Orthodox Constantinople in 1204 being the example that comes to mind first.

      • Psycho Milt 8.3.1

        My implicit argument is that it doesn’t make sense to try and explain historical events in terms of genocidal bad guys vs innocent civilians. Leave that to the movies.

  9. bwaghorn 9

    I suppose its akin to some future Muslim football team being called “the jihadis ” it would be poor taste but if it was a thousand years since the last jihad probably not that offensive.

    • Rae 9.1

      White supremacists are on a crusade, see themselves as crusaders, same thing, I would have thought

      • Gabby 9.1.1

        So you’re happy about surrendering ownership of the word to the nazis are you raerae?

        • Rae 9.1.1.1

          No which is why I would change the name of the crusaders so they don’t get the wrong impression and think that means we support them. Along with crusader symbolism – acre 1189 – on the killers weapons were also nazi symbols so two birds with one stone, sounds good to me.

        • Rae 9.1.1.2

          Just reread your comment Gabgab and now I am at my big computer I can see it better than I did on the phone. Surrendering ownership of a word? Seriously, this is not Cardi-B trademarking a stupid sound, this is a name that means something, not all of it good, and I would not give too many effs about letting go of a word in order not to be mistaken for supporters of white supremacists, or to have the team and supporters overseas, especially as I trust it would not happen here, subject to reprisal attacks. Low road for me Gabgab.

          It is all around the world that white supremacists align themselves with the original crusaders, not just that dude, and it’s not beyond the bounds of possibility that he chose Christchurch because of that very name, that maybe 50 people would be still alive today if they were called something else, who knows.

    • How about a couple of weeks after a militant Islamist had murdered 50 people and injured nearly 50 others gathered at local humanists and rationalists society meeting in that football team’s home town, in the worst terrorist attack in that country’s history? Could be that “Jihadis” suddenly looked like a seriously inappropriate name for the local team?

      • bwaghorn 9.2.1

        The name predated the act . If the act happened in Auckland would be changing the crusaders name ?
        On this they are letting the killer win ,got fighting amongst our selves.
        I doubt that when the footy team was named they were planning any raids on the middle east (unless the got a team worth playing. )
        I’d leave it but I wont lose to much sleep if it changes
        It’s a very common theme nowadays though ,making people change things to please a minority .
        The poor buggers that set up a small business called ‘south naki ‘ are finding this out plus the town of bennydale .

        • McFlock 9.2.1.1

          Having a little bit of empathy is quite the opposite of “letting the killer win”.

          The thought has occurred as to whether any of the not-closeted fascists in ChCH over the last 20 years actually felt a little bit more at home there because of the team branding.

          • bwaghorn 9.2.1.1.1

            Ardern said we would give him nothing . For being a private company to rebrand to please the vocal few is not nothing

            • McFlock 9.2.1.1.1.1

              But it’s not going to him, is it.

              I think it would be quite nice if the fucker’s act resulted in greater consideration, rather than division along the lines he wanted.

            • Rae 9.2.1.1.1.2

              I am more inclined to think the victory for him will be in retaining the name, he could well see that as some sort of validation of his act, as a self styled crusader in the original sense of the word, on a crusade in the city of a team called the Crusaders.

              Seriously people, you need to see the connection between white supremacists and the term crusaders, iconry, and the act of March 15. The more I think about it, the more I cannot understand how anyone could want to retain a name linked to him and his ilk.

        • Psycho Milt 9.2.1.2

          The name predated the act .

          Irrelevant.

          If the act happened in Auckland would be changing the crusaders name ?

          Of idle academic curiosity interest only.

          On this they are letting the killer win ,got fighting amongst our selves.

          No doubt he’ll be chuffed to learn that for the low, low price of spending the rest of his life in prison, he’s scored the lasting victory of getting a few people to argue about a brand name on blog comments threads.

        • Rae 9.2.1.3

          Yes, the name predated the act, but have you considered the possibility that an Australian native living in Dunedin may well have chosen Christchurch to do what he did, seeing himself as a crusader, with stuff that white supremacists use to connect with the original crusades, exactly because of the team name?

    • Phil 9.3

      if it was a thousand years since the last jihad

      I’m not convinced time is a relevant factor. For instance, it has taken more than 2000 years for historians to bring people around to the notion that Alexander ‘The Great’ was actually little more than a genocidal monster who makes the likes of Hitler, Stalin and Pol Pot look like children with a magnifying glass over an ants nest.

      I hope that society would be less tolerant today than 100 years ago if, say, Ashburton wanted to call their rugby team the Alexanders and have a Macedonian phalanx as their mascot or logo.

  10. Bg 10

    How Woke do you want to get?

    Northern Kinghts? The Cheifs? The Warriors?

    No one in Kzulu Natal screamed for the Sharks to have a good look at themselves and change their name after Mick Fanning nearly got eaten by a white pointer?

    • Rae 10.1

      Read my comment above and you might understand why the name is now no longer tenable.

    • mauī 10.2

      “Northern Kinghts? The Cheifs? The Warriors”

      Can you please explain how these are offensive or inappropriate names?
      Are you anti-Maori or something?

    • maggieinnz 10.3

      “How Woke do you want to get?”

      You lost me at ‘woke’.

      “No one in Kzulu Natal screamed for the Sharks to have a good look at themselves and change their name after Mick Fanning nearly got eaten by a white pointer?”

      If the sharks had come out of the water and collectively decided to wipe out humans you might have had a point but comparing genocide to a naturally occurring phenomenon is silly.

  11. AB 11

    All those stupid , cringey names should be reviewed by someone over the age of 12.

  12. Really interesting. I want to know everything about rugby. Thank you so much.

  13. mac1 13

    After reading above the name the “Peacemakers”, how about the Canterbury Quakers, which would incorporate both peace-loving and recent events in the whole region. 🙂

    I had a discussion with a man who thought the disquiet for the name only came up recently. I told him that I had heard this for some time. I said it was a bit like naming a team in County Clare in Ireland the “Clare Cromwellians” or a team in the Highlands of Scotland the “Glencoe Campbells.”

    We should know and respect our history, and its meaning. My old primary school teacher, a lovely Irish nun, once said to me, referring to the Ulster plantation, “There are some things we don’t joke about!”

    Where I come from, the name for a local historical event has changed from the “Wairau Massacre” to the “Wairau Affray.” The judgement of history does change with time.

  14. WeTheBleeple 14

    Rugby at it’s heart is tribal. It was always an us vs them scenario. But that’s no excuse to be culturally insensitive, especially in the light of teams trading players from all over the globe.

    We have 200 nationalities here now. That’s incredible, and will be the subject of my first guest post if I get roundtuit.

    The branding or naming of teams allowed fan tribalism to continue while player’s regional loyalties waned in favor of player’s financial incentives. So having names that are not specifically regional makes sense.

    Being sensitive to the political climate will earn clubs more loyalty and fans than worrying about angry old RSA patrons opinions. I used to do a bit of work when the warriors played: while supported majorly by our Maori/Pacific Island communities, the Warriors pull a seriously multicultural crowd. I imagine many rugby crowds are similar today?

    Imagine 200 nationalities comfortably supporting our teams. That’d help the ticket sales. That’d widen the pool of new recruits. Stars would emerge.

  15. Booker 15

    It’s not so much the name, as their mascots being guys dressed up in medieval gear, swinging swords and riding out on horseback. Even before the mosque attacks I’d see that and go “ummm…okayyy, whose idea was this?”

  16. mosa 16

    Feckin rugby.
    Typical that this would be an issue so close to an massacre of innocent people.
    No matter the situation we have to have rugby as a focal point in anything we have to deal with as a country.
    Even Money boy Williams had to interfere in this time of sincere grief and the media had to run with it.
    We will never mature as a country.

    • tc 16.1

      Not possible with our infantile media dumbing it down for the sheeple peddling the distractions and misdirection

    • Formerly Ross 17.1

      A marketing exercise that is no more.

      • McFlock 17.1.1

        Oh, that’s alright then /sarc

        Get back to us when they change the logo

        • Formerly Ross 17.1.1.1

          McFlock

          It probably will be changed but not in five minutes.

        • Gabby 17.1.1.2

          You’d be a bit ropable about all those flags covered in crosses around the world too I spose flockers?

          • McFlock 17.1.1.2.1

            At least national flags generally have some relevance to the nation in question.

            What relevance does a knight swinging a sword have to rugby, or Canterbury?

            • Grant 17.1.1.2.1.1

              So relevance is the criteria for whether the crusader symbolism is offensive and should be removed?

              • McFlock

                You do realise there’s more to “crusader symbolism” than just a cross, right?

                Although you will obviously be aware that in many nations the role of the Red Cross is under the brand “Red Crescent” because, in part, of that problem.

                You see, the issue is context. Relevance is part of that context. Local history is part of that context. The Red Cross is not directly from Christianity, it’s a colour inversion of the swiss flag. But in some nations, the local context makes a symbol change appropriate.

                • Grant

                  I do indeed realise that the issue is much more complex than has so far been explored in this post and subsequent comments.

                  Leaving that aside for now, are you sure the Red Cross / Swiss flag is not directly from Christianity? My understanding is that the Swiss flag is almost certainly taken directly or indirectly from the battle standard of the Holy Roman Empire.

                  Context is certainly an issue. When Crusader type imagery is used by Fascists or Nazis the context is obvious. When a bunch of rugby boof-heads who’ve barely read a book between them do it in a totally unthinking way I’m more inclined to sigh and see it as an extremely diluted cultural remnant which bears little significance to most Kiwis of whatever background.

                  • McFlock

                    The Swiss flag is. The red cross isn’t. It’s one removed.

                    Context is certainly an issue. When Crusader type imagery is used by Fascists or Nazis the context is obvious. When a bunch of rugby boof-heads who’ve barely read a book between them do it in a totally unthinking way I’m more inclined to sigh and see it as an extremely diluted cultural remnant which bears little significance to most Kiwis of whatever background.

                    Yeah, current context means maybe the boofheads should start thinking.

                    • Grant

                      So just to be clear, cultural relicts from the crusading age are permitted and non-offensive when they are not used by extreme right wingers and not used in a casual and unthinking way by boof-heads?

                    • Grant

                      The red crescent has nothing to do with Islam?

                    • McFlock

                      So just to be clear, cultural relicts from the crusading age are permitted and non-offensive when they are not used by extreme right wingers and not used in a casual and unthinking way by boof-heads?

                      “permitted”? 🙄
                      Am I permitted to criticise unthinking boof-heads for being insensitive dicks?

                      If a humanitarian group can rebrand in areas where its brand sent an unintended message, a fucking rugby team can, as well.

            • Gabby 17.1.1.2.1.2

              Isn’t Canterbury a religious centre any more flockers?

              • McFlock

                You mean the one in the UK? Yeah, they don’t have a good history with drunken knights freshly returned from the crusades, either.

    • tc 17.2

      Gooner will run with this as a distraction as a break from his low IQ ranting.

  17. Formerly Ross 18

    “There has never been anything positive about the name crusaders…”

    Of course a crusader is defined as a “person who campaigns vigorously for political, social, or religious change; a campaigner“, so there is nothing wrong with the word. It is all about context, as always.

    How was Batman referred to? The caped crusader who fought evil.

  18. Stuart Munro. 19

    Crusaders seems to have been chosen for alliteration. Since the franchise has dropped the provincial part of the title, pretty much anything would do. But the intent of choosing Crusader was (as far as we know) not intended as a gratuitous offence to residents of the Levant.

    The obvious replacement would be something like ‘The Strivers’, because it is the striving that is the respectable part of the modern use of crusader. Not sure they’ll adopt it though; jihad means striving, and it is considered a duty in all facets of life by Muslims, as well as among their co-Abrahamic neighbours, the Hasidic Jews. Language is as riddled with religion and philosophy as the Gnats are riddled with incompetence, malice, and vice.

    • SPC 19.1

      I doubt it.

      The head of the Anglican Church Communion is the Arch Bishop of Canterbury (location of Canterbury Christ Church University in Kent). The franchise is based in Christchurch (note, no one is going to change the name of the city).

      Blues (Auckland and Northland in blue), Chiefs of Counties/Waikato-KingCountry Bay of Plenty, Hurricanes of windy Wellington, rrrr Highlanders of the cold south. Each name seemed self-evident.

      I agree about the use of the term jihad, we associate it with terrorism because of groups who use violence, but it’s meaning is distinct from the means that some groups use.

    • Gabby 19.2

      No it’s not stuey, it’s the military image, they’ve all gone for it, highlanders, chiefs, etcetc. A break from bloody beasts of pray anyway.

      • Grant 19.2.1

        “..beasts of pray..

        Is that a bit of clever word play Gabby?

      • Stuart Munro. 19.2.2

        It’s lots of things. Knights are packed with romantic as well as military associations. What a marketing outfit looks for is something that will resonate with the public – Crusaders was one of their better choices in those terms.

        It’s losing relevance though. Rugby participation is falling, and much like regional brewery preference, people can take it or leave it in a way they didn’t in the past.

        • In Vino 19.2.2.1

          It seems to me that we are arguing about this from one perspective only – that of the ignorant rugby boof-heads. Many have pointed out that for us, the words ‘crusade’ and ‘crusader’ have good connotations about fighting for an ideal.
          People need to learn the truth about how the medieval Crusaders actually behaved. Most people seem to have no idea at all.
          For the Islamic world, I have read that the word ‘Crusader’ is a pejorative, an insult. The equivalent maybe of ‘bloodthirsty Jihadi fanatic’.

          If that is true, we have to get real about inclusiveness and get rid of the name ‘Crusaders’ asap. We need to look beyond our own narrow cultural knowledge (or rather, ignorance.)

          To those who want to keep the name – read up on the historical truth of the barbaric Crusades.

  19. Tiger Mountain 20

    Time to name rugby teams more accurately?
    –“the easy beats”, “lots off contract soon”, “the bottom dwellers”, “sponsors too rich to fail”, “the problem gamblers”, “the coke heads”, “the refs favourites”, “the Pacific imports”, “the sheep shaggers” etc. might suffice…

  20. SPC 21

    The name was given to the franchise by the NZRU led by David Moffat, the Australian currently head of the anti UN migratrion compact New Conservative Party.

    The origin is with Constantine, who claimed to see a sign – a cross of light inscribed with ‘Conquer by This’ before the battle at Malvian Bridge.

    In that sense alone the term crusade has a wider meaning than “the Crusades” – military conflict between Moslems and Christians occured in a larger area and for a longer period of time. It would also include the Tuetonic Knights in Eastern Europe, the Conquistidors in Americas, and non militant forms of crusade – evangelical, environmental, social justice etc, anti-corruption etc.

    An English rugby club has the name, Saracens.

    Maybe they should have a match with the Crusaders in Jerusalem.

  21. Grant 22

    Just the Canterbury Crusaders or all references to Crusader history and symbolism everywhere?

    • Skunk Weed 22.1

      The “Supremists” name would fit perfectly ?

    • McFlock 22.2

      Some history should stay in the history books, and not be used in some alliterative marketing exercise.

      • Grant 22.2.1

        Just trying to get a feel for how extensive the argument for removal of all crusader symbolism is.

        • McFlock 22.2.1.1

          Maybe the argument should be for “relevance” rather than “removal”?

          Let me put it this way: if NZ provincials can build an emotional bond with a brand that was completely irrelevant to their region, imagine their bond if the name was actually relevant in a positive way.

  22. I don’t know how the Crusaders fits with Canterbury anyway, theft of Maori Land perhaps and the conuqeuring of the South Island by Government financial stealth perhaps ?

  23. greywarshark 24

    I remember seeing an old man in recent years, complaining about the heinous behaviour of protesters who stopped some springbok matches in 1981.

  24. Nik 25

    How about ‘Arch-Bishops’?

  25. Professor Longhair 26

    Canterbury Cox-Huckers?

  26. ken 28

    What do the Crusaders have to do with Canterbury anyway?

    ‘The Canterbury Lambs’ is far more relevant.

  27. bwaghorn 29

    While we are at it we better stop calling the Auckland league team the warriors.
    Warriors have killed millions down through the ages

  28. reason 30

    Even in modern history …… ‘crusader’ language is polarizing and contentious

    ” It was bin Laden’ s first reference to Iraq and to the UN sanctions which were to result, according to UN officials themselves, in the death of more than half a million children.

    “Killing those Iraqi children is a crusade against Islam,” bin Laden said.
    “W e as Muslims do not like the Iraqi regime but we think that the Iraqi people and their
    children are our brothers and we care about their future.” It was the first time I heard him use the word “crusade.” ”

    The Great War for Civilisation …… R . Fisk

  29. AB 31

    Rugby for kiwis is like guns for Americans. Any vaguely critical discussion of it flushes nutters out of the bushes.

    • SHG 31.1

      Rugby player and fan checking in, all the Super Rugby team names are infantile and the “Crusaders” brand has always been offensive. The name, the knights on horses waving swords, the imagery, it’s cringeworthy.

      • SPC 31.1.1

        No more infantile than with sports franchises the world over.

        • SHG 31.1.1.1

          Yeah but a lot of those sports franchises have been in existence for fifty, hell, a hundred years or more. The Super Rugby teams were named by some marketing ponytail during the Internet Age.

          Blues? Chiefs? WTF?
          Crusaders? In the city of skinheads?

  30. Gabby 32

    Maybe you should think of it as aversion therapy. Before we know it christophobia might vanish, who knows.

  31. Jimmy 33

    They will always be the Crusaders to me. Until the attack I have never associated Crusaders with muslims …i just don’t know my history. I also think that by changing the name because of the gunman is wrong.

  32. Observer Tokoroa 34

    Rugby ?

    It’s a good game for stocky stumpy Girls. They get a lot of fun out of it. And why not !

    The man’s Rugby has had it. Too many Mishaps. And too Dull unfortunately.

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  • Appointment round for King’s Counsel announced
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  • Retiring Chief of Navy thanked for his service
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  • State of the Nation
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