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UFC dragged into possible hate crime incident

Remember that good impression Dana White was hoping to leave with the city of Vancouver? It might get ruined over two assholes who beat up a gay couple after the show:

The Vancouver Police Department says its hate-crime investigator is looking into an apparent gay bashing over the weekend, which the victims are blaming on an Ultimate Fighting Championship event.

But Const. Lindsey Houghton said there’s no evidence that’s the case.

David Holtzman and Peter Regier say they were taunted with homophobic slurs and repeatedly punched outside their downtown Vancouver apartment on Saturday.

The couple believes the attackers were coming from the UFC mixed martial arts event at GM Place.

Police are investigating the incident but so far no arrests have been made. The suspects are described as Indo-Canadian men in their 20s who were both wearing jeans and T-shirts.

Regier and Holtzman said the city is partly to blame for holding violent events such as the UFC in the neighbourhood.

“You know, for us, it raises some larger concerns about, I guess for the city. I had no opinion about UFC coming to Vancouver originally … but you know, look at what happened to us steps away from where the fight went down, we’re assaulted, just steps away,” said Regier.

Holtzman said, unlike the recent crowds downtown for the Olympics, the UFC event created a different mood on the street.

“UFC, like fighting, is about fighting and it’s about testosterone…. When you see someone like that, what are you going to do? You’re going to react like in a fighting mode. I mean it promotes fighting. That’s what it’s about,” said Holtzman.

“I think the city has to give a good think about UFC, and I am going to obviously be an opponent to this because of what happened to me,” he said.

The whole thing started when the gay couple found two drunk guys pissing on their front stoop and ended with the drunk guys beating them up while calling them the kind of things you’d imagine drunk bigots would yell while gay bashing gay people. That might push this whole thing into hate crime territory … not exactly a positive mark on the UFC’s rep if these guys turn out to be from the show.

Now just like Cesar Gracie and the gang tried to defend their poor behavior during the Nashville brawl by pointing out other sports have the same issues, this might be time to point out that hockey, football, and soccer fans are just as likely (if not statistically more likely) to be drunken jackasses as MMA fans. Plus we don’t even know that these guys came from the UFC event. But that hasn’t stopped some people from assigning blame on the UFC and the city that allowed the UFC in. Here’s the kind of comment that you’ll find attached to the many articles floating around about this incident:

Well of course this was a result of hosting that UFC event here! I live in the same neighbourhood and saw the streets swarming with drunken chest-thumping neanderthals. I don’t know where they came from, but, they didn’t all just quietly go home after the event was over, quite a few lingered around to use doorways as toilets and taunt people walking by. The atmosphere was a lot worse than any hockey game, yet I saw not one policemen in the area. UFC, VPD and Mayor Robertson FAILED to keep citizens safe as they promised to do when the Mayor sanctioned and allowed this event to take place.

Let’s hope the police catch these guys, and don’t forget to keep your fingers crossed that they wandered out of a bar and not GM Place. For some reason, I think bars will still be allowed to operate in Vancouver if that’s the case. MMA may not be so lucky.