The most pathetic thing about the recent riots in Vancouver is not the packs of video game addicts finally emerging from hibernation to smash windows, loot, and set things on fire -- which, by the way, proves what pussies they are, as they'll only lash out when there is zero risk of detection or punishment, when they can slink like cowards into a vast crowd.
No, what's more disgusting is everyone else sitting on their fat ass -- or in some cases walking right by the vandalism, perhaps even taking pictures for their Facebook updates. Why aren't old ladies pouring out into the streets to smack these punks around with brooms and frying pans? Why aren't neighborhood kids forming block patrols to keep the loser brigades from screwing with their hang-outs? And why aren't military veterans organizing a posse? Shoot, the Vancouver police should have booked a flight for Epic Beard Man if their local residents are just going to sit around and watch their city burn.
Given how few are causing real trouble, and given how cowardly and uncommitted they are, it would hardly take an army of people from the community to shut down most of this senseless destruction. It would not even have to get very violent: it would go a long way to just have a large crowd glaring at them, like "God, you're pathetic, it's no wonder you'll always be a failure." A good deal of their motivation is to boost their non-existent status by having a mob cheer on their (imaginary) badassery. So if their kicking in a store window was only met with stares of contempt, they would stop, scream "Well screw you guys for judging me, then!" and shuffle home crying to tell their mommies how mean the crowd was, and to "leave me alone while I play Grand Theft Auto -- I mean it this time, Mom!"
That the residents of Vancouver could not manage even a fraction of this low necessary level of response shows how thoroughly wasted away the city is on the inside. It has abandoned community defense and outsourced the clean-up job to even more apathetic mercenaries, i.e. the police. It is as though the social body had shut off its own immune system -- "too much hassle to protect something we don't care about" -- and began relying on emergency room visits and cocktails of antibiotics after the inevitable invasion by pathogens. Their will to survive has dwindled so much that they are just a couple steps away from telling the doc to just pull the plug and get it over with already.
Perhaps if the rioting served some larger purpose -- whether justified or not -- things would not look so bleak. If, for example, the rioting were about politics, economics, race relations, and so on. When there are two sides in a battle-with-a-purpose, onlookers might not be able to tell right away which side was right, or if both had legitimate grievances. They might also have a greater fear of reprisal by the group who they sided against, since in these situations -- but not where it's just a bunch of uncommitted losers wreaking havoc -- the other side feels strongly enough about their side winning that they will try to retaliate. This senselessness is what makes sports rioting such a telling sign of how weakly held together a society is.
But such shockingly low levels of social cohesion are hardly unique to Canada, which has never really had a strong national identity. Even in America, over the past 20 years as our solidarity has plateaued or started to fall, sports rioting has become far more common, at least judging from Wikipedia's list of riots, which does have pretty extensive coverage of the past half-century. They were not entirely absent during our peak as a society from roughly 1950 to 1990, but in comparison they have exploded since 1992.
However, 1950 to 1990 was not a period free of sports riots in England; in fact, that was when soccer hooliganism became a regular feature of the culture. This was just one symptom of the widespread fraying of the social fabric during that time, which would lead to losing its first-place status among nations to America. Similar hooliganism pervades the rest of Europe, and of course they haven't been strong countries for over 100 years.
Turning to the good news, where don't we find sports rioting in Western countries? You shouldn't be surprised if you read the post below predicting that Australia is the best bet in the medium-long-term for upholding civilization. The list of riots mentioned earlier doesn't have any entries that are sports riots within Australia, or New Zealand for that matter, aside from protests against visiting teams from Apartheid South Africa in 1971 and 1981, respectively. The small handful of riots in Australia are the occasional garden-variety race riots that erupt whenever highly dissimilar groups live within the same nation. Even those don't appear to have involved more than a couple hundred people.
The 2005 Cronulla riots were larger, but they still were nothing like the scale and damage done during the 1992 Los Angeles Riots. And those riots were more of a community-defense response against some Middle Eastern troublemakers -- a sign of a functioning immune system, then, unlike the sports rioting of other Western countries.
And it's not as though there's no culture of sports and drinking there to provide the pretext for senseless rioting, if that's what people wanted to do. I've never been there, but I do remember that the Australians in Barcelona went carousing like other Anglo groups on the weekend. Evidently, this only goes as far as chummy drunken revelry, and not wantonly trashing the community while everyone else looks on in apathy.