Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 6/8/2011 (3981 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
When Bartley Kives gently chided pacifists who objected to the Winnipeg Jets' air force inspired logo in last Sunday's Xtra, he triggered a war of words.
The new logo goes to show you how war and the military is buried deep in our psyche these days... it creeps out in the strangest places.
Your column is filled with some of the most contorted reasoning I have read in awhile. The logo is militaristic, plain and simple. Many sports team utilize the ferocious and the fantastic (Giants, Raptors, Lightning) while others utilize the pastoral (Leafs, Rockies, Lakers). The original Jets logo had a domestic jet aircraft that gestured toward industry, speed and innovation -- a modern image of Winnipeg that did not resort to martial iconography. Sure sport can be a proxy for military conflict but it need not be. A modern and technologically advanced military may be a necessity in the contemporary world but that does not mean our society and its symbols need to be militaristic.
The jets on the logo are built to kill men, women and children. The jets on the logo are currently killing men, women and children in Libya at the bidding of the corporation called Canada (not to be confused with the land mass also called Canada), a corporation who is also represented on the logo with the corporate symbol of the maple leaf.
Love your work Bartley, but I think you slipped off the end of the springboard while doing the mental gymnastics required to justify the killing machines on the logo.
When the Jets are playing the Coyotes, firing on Bryzgalov, fighting for a playoff spot against the Hurricanes, or in a bitter feud with the Wild, every single person will have long forgotten this argument and will be instead shouting in unison at the MTS Centre or at their TV, "KILL THEM!"
I don't understand the negativity due to the association with the military. I don't understand the pacifists who do not support our military.
Sure, I understand the theory of it. It would be wonderful if we lived in a utopian society where no one ever fought, laws were never broken, and there was no need for a military. Unfortunately, that is not the world we live in. This logo has been designed to pay tribute and respect to the military and the soldiers, past and present, who have risked and given so much for us. I understand that some people may have issues with how our military is used and deployed, but it not the military who makes these decisions, it is the government.
Bartley, by reducing human nature to militarism and assuming a moral standard grounded in the middle ages, you have cynically given up on humanity's agency and ability to project a better world, a more human, cooperative world based on the newer paradigm that comes with the ecological turn to recognizing that we all share more or less the same conditions of life and are bound within the same atmosphere and natural laws. Hence, we are more similar than the difference perpetuated by this medieval village attitude.
Sporting events express our competitive instincts moreso than our militaristic edge. It is the exploitation of this competitive instinct into large groupings like the nation or nation-state that leads to a new scale of competitiveness that dehumanizes and seeks to destroy the other, namely, WAR. The manipulation serves military interests and those of capital that sell us endless weapons and endless jerseys, caps and T-shirts, to distract us from the real game being played with billions of our dollars. Icons and logos are key tools in this deception. Thus this logo, coming on the heels of the election of a Conservative majority bent on increasing this faux nationalism and military funding, reeks of a slap-in-the-face conservative triumphalism. A new agenda is being enacted in Canada and Chipman and the new Jets are buying into and promoting this worldview hook, line, and sinker.
What I've learned here today is that there are a lot of you people out there who need to: a) eat more fresh fruit b) take a good dump and c) try to get to bed at a half decent hour! Our armed forces have through the years been "over there" so that you don't have to be. From reading some of your comments, I can only say that just because some of you are "here" it doesn't mean that you are all "there."
"I salute you, Jets logo." Right on Bart. Ditto. When the Jets logo is reduced to a pictogram, you end up with the peace sign. Make love not war, guys.
-- Rich North