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Stop the violence

by Archives January 8, 2008

A friend of mine was stabbed by some strangers outside club Seven last week on Crescent Street.
What has gone so inherently wrong in our city that someone has to worry about being cut up when he goes out for a night on the town?
I wish this were the first story of its kind that I’ve heard; rather, the unfortunate truth is that this scenario has become all too common in Montreal.
While working in and frequenting various clubs and bars over the years, I have been witness to two stabbings, two shootings, and countless gang assaults on one or more individuals; I’ve even seen women getting beaten in the streets by men.
Friends of mine a few years older have told me how they have never had to deal with the violence that so many young people face now when they go out. Club and bar owners now routinely install metal detectors at the door, which is always a discouraging sign for me whenever I go somewhere. I’m now always on the lookout for potential trouble to avoid.
If I had a dollar for every time I’ve heard, “Bro, you don’t know who I am,” or “One phone call and you’re dead,” I’d be rich. I guess everybody is somebody, or at least they wish they were. Problem is: short of getting into it with someone, it’s hard to tell a big talker from the guy with a gun and an entourage.
If I’m obliged to choose between telling someone I’m sorry for bumping into them, or picking a fight, I’ll be the bigger man any day and at least try and shake his hand. The problem today is that everyone has something to prove, and no one is willing to back down, even from people they will probably never see again in their lives.
I know there are exceptions and sometimes a conflict simply can’t be avoided, but the best way to not find yourself in the emergency room is by manning up, and f&*king off. Sure that guy was a douche and deserved a beating, but wouldn’t you rather finish off the bottle and grab a burger instead?

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