Columnist has “cold sweats” after insensitive reference to Montreal massacre

Chris Jones had a very bad day yesterday, and he’s not going to feel much better about things today.

The Port Hope, Ont. writer recently landed a gig as the back page columnist for ESPN Magazine, a U.S.-based sports magazine that does about 2-million copies every two weeks. That’s the good part.
The bad part is that his fourth column – which was released online yesterday but lands in newsstands today – uses the term “Montreal Massacre Part II” to refer to the management antics of Jeff Loria, the owner of the Florida Marlins baseball team.

“Stadiums have never saved cities,” Mr. Jones writes, comparing the Marlins’ plans to build a new stadium to Mr. Loria’s thwarted attempts to move out of the Big O when he was the owner of the Montreal Expos. “In fact, you’re about to witness the Montreal Massacre, Part II, only on a far grander, even more heartbreaking scale.”

Mr. Loria is widely blamed for driving the Expos out of Montreal.

The problem: As most Canadians (but not necessarily U.S. editors) know, “Montreal Massacre” commonly refers to the Ecole Polytechnique shootings, when Marc Lepine killed 14 female students in 1989.

Read the full story in The Globe and Mail.

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