Don Cherry's remarks about immigrants wearing poppies (or lack thereof) during a November 9 broadcast of Hockey Night In Canada have not gone over well. Both Sportsnet and Ron MacLean have now apologized publicly for Don Cherry's Remembrance Day rant, but some people on Twitter believe that no apology was needed.
In a statement released on their Public Relations Twitter account, Sportsnet called Cherry's remarks "offensive," and stated, "They do not represent our values and what we stand for as a network."
"We have spoken with Don about the severity of this issue and we sincerely apologize for these divisive remarks," the statement concluded.
Ron MacLean, Don Cherry's longtime on-air cohost, offered his own apology on Twitter, writing, "I want to sincerely apologize to our viewers and Canadians. During last night's broadcast, Don made comments that were hurtful and prejudiced and I wish I had handled myself differently. It was a divisive moment and I am truly upset with myself for allowing it."
In a second tweet, MacLean wrote, "I have worked with Don for 30 years, and we both love hockey. But last night, I know we failed you. I see hockey as part of what unites us. I have the honour of travelling across our country to celebrate Canada's game, and our diversity is one of our country's greatest strengths."
Don Cherry has not released his own statement, nor has he spoken publicly about his remarks from November 9.
Despite the apologies, there were people on Twitter who believed that none were needed. The hashtag #DonCherryIsRight started trending just this morning.
"#DonCherryIsRight DID NOT single out "New" Immigrants. His statement is precisely on-point. It is incumbent upon ALL #Canadians to pay homage/respect to those who courageously/selflessly fought/died for #Canada . ALL #Canadians must show unwavering appreciation. #RemembranceDay," wrote @kgreen3.
"Anyone saying Don Cherry is a racist is part of the problem. Spend a dollar and get a poppy. We're able to sit back and watch hockey because our veterans sacrificed their lives for us. #DonCherryIsRight," wrote @SoybeanHc.
Canadians have their own ways of honouring veterans on Remembrance Day. A Winnipeg woman organized the creation of an 85-foot poppy blanket. Similarly, some people are wearing purple poppies to remember animals who gave their lives in various conflicts.