Opinion: Why riot?

As we all know, college students are openly full of school pride. Having school spirit and cheering on their teams is all part of the “college experience” after all. Recently though, college students have been taking this pride to a whole different level by rioting as a form of celebration.

Last night, riots hit close at the University of Minnesota. After an impressive goal with 0.6 seconds remaining, the Gophers defeated the University of North Dakota, allowing the gophers to move onto the NCAA final this Saturday night. Hundreds of students and fans spilled into the streets around Dinkytown just after 11 p.m., climbing on cars, throwing bottles and cans and setting fires to trash cans. Police had to use tear gas and mace to control the crowd.

Last week, after the University of Connecticut’s mens and womens basketball teams both took home National Championship titles, fans reacted in a similar way: by destroying property. Iowa State University was forced to cancel the rest of VEISHEA, a tradition with the purpose of showcasing the school through “educational and entertainment events,” because of students’ dangerous and reckless behavior in the name of “celebrating.”

Following the lead of Uconn and ISU, riots ensued in Dinkytown, because apparently rioting is now the “normal” thing to do. As a senior who will be entering college next year, I understand celebrating, but I don’t understand how flipping cars, starting fires, or breaking street lights is a form of being happy about something.

Pepper spray and jail don’t exactly sound fun either.

Looking ahead to the NCAA final or other championship games that will occur in the future, students should begin to act much more respectful, before drastic actions need to be taken.