As I am following the Edmonton Oilers Cheer Squad story (and I certainly have heard from my friends who are not pleased with The Oil at all) I can't help but think of my home team, the Vancouver Canucks. The Canucks got it right when adding this ice squad element six years ago. Introducing the current version of the Canucks Ice Team...
This photo is from the ice team's page and can be viewed here
The most important point of all: the Vancouver Canucks are an equal opportunity employer: both males and females are working together on the team. The Canucks know both males and females can possess the qualities found in great promotional representatives, and they are giving both genders an equal opportunity to gain valuable experience for their careers.
They are dressed sporty, and the girls are provided with jackets, too, so it's their choice to cover up or not. I have never seen the team wear shorty shorts or mini skirts which is also very, very good.
The Canucks Ice Team do the Canucks proud when they get busy at the games and in the community. I've seen them in action and they are a great example for other teams to follow.
So when I read Edmonton Oilers president and CEO, Patrick LaForge say "the cheerleading team is a great way for the Oilers organization to stay current" I am surprised. I think what the Vancouver Canucks have done is current. Being an equal opportunity employer is a "current" thing to do. Treating the female members of the team with respect by providing a sporty, respectable uniform to wear is current and progressive minded thinking.
Oiler Petition update: as of 2:30pm PST Sat. Oct.23,2010 the list is now up to 395 signatures. To view the list please click here
Sig number 355's comment was interesting...
"Hockey Purist in Arizona - Doesn't work here either!!" Jeff in Phoenix