I wish I could say I was surprised by this story, but unfortunately there remain some segments of the hockey world where this type of behavior is very common.
A youth hockey coach named Talha Javaid has taken to social media to express his unhappiness with a horrific text message he received this week from one of the parents of the children he helps coach in his home state of Michigan. Now disgruntled parents are nothing new in hockey, but the content of the text message he received goes far beyond even the most heinous things you can come to expect from out of control hockey parents. The content of the message can only be described as incredibly prejudice in their nature and in fact seem to be downright racist as well.
First here is the text message that Javaid claims he received from a parent who only identified himself as Chase:
Hi, I just wanted to express how I feel about you as my sons hockey coach. I'm not racist or anything but I don't feel comfortable with you teaching him and the influence you will have on him. It's hockey right? It makes more sense if it's not some Muslim guy teach it. If it was Cricket or something that would be different but it's not. I don't want to make this into an issue and really hope you would consider resigning and not coaching hockey, it goes against tradition and I'm sure there are others who feel the same way. I really don't want to pull my son from the team either but would habe to think about that if you're the coach.
Now aside from the obvious prejudice in the message here it also appears as though Chase is comfortable using his own child's participation in the youth hockey team as a tool to blackmail the coach into resigning, pretty reprehensible behavior to be sure. Javaid admits that this was not his first encounter with racism in the hockey world, the young man has been playing ice and ball hockey since he was a child and claims to have run into this type of behavior before, but in spite of that he still felt it appropriate to give "Chase" a piece of his mind. Presumably the "Riley" mentioned here is Chase's son.
Ya know something, I'm disappointed. And don't ever say "I'm not racist but..." and then follow it with clear cut racist and xenophobic nonsense. Jesus Christ. And would make sense if it was Cricket? What's the matter with you? And then saying you don't want to make it into an issue, but go ahead and do just that. Want to be rude to me? Fine, go for it, I'm used to it but for the love of god, at least think about Riley and what kind of mindset and mentality you're putting in his head. No I'm not gonna resign and you really should make your peace with it because you're being absolutely ridiculous bud. Riley's a good kid and he's talented, you're going to make his life very difficult through everything it seems you're teaching him. Don't be daft and don't come at me with this rubbish mate. Please think hard about what you just said and never talk to me about this again for both our sakes.
I will add that there are always two sides to every story. but given the screenshots published by Javaid on social media the behavior from Chase here seems pretty reprehensible and indefensible. My one hope is that the attention and support Javaid has received following his publication of this message will help encourage him to keep coaching, a position that will no doubt help him positively influence the lives of many young men who love the sport of hockey.