It doesn't rank up there with killing someone over a cartoon, but fining disgruntled hockey fans for throwing the home team's jersey on the ice smacks of the same kind of fundamentalist intolerance.
Three Toronto Maple Leafs fans were escorted from the Air Canada Center and banned from the building for a year after throwing Leafs jerseys onto the ice during a 4-1 loss to Carolina. Ejection from the game and a ban from the building are reasonable consequences, but the malefactors were additionally charged with "engaging in prohibited activity" under an Ontario law called the Trespass to Property Act - an offence that carries a fine in the neighborhood of 125 dollars.
Really, Toronto? Arresting people for mocking the hapless outfit that Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment trots out there under the guise of professional athletics? Taking into account that you're probably paying minimum 200 dollars a seat to be close enough to throw a jersey on the ice and that replica Leafs jerseys start at 170 dollars before tax and shipping on shop.nhl.com, the perpetrators were probably already out of pocket to the tune of at least 400 dollars before they got ticketed for being a public nuisance. Is that not punishment enough?
If it's about respecting the brand, it's too late. The Leafs brand is in tatters, thanks to decades of mismanagement. And spare me the argument that throwing a jersey on the ice creates a dangerous situation for the players. Even a Leaf can skate around a stationary object.