Most NHL players aren’t vegans.
The chances of a guy who made his name in the league by throwing punches being one must be next to zero.
But, there’s Georges Laraque.
The former Edmonton, Pittsburgh, Phoenix and Montreal winger is now more than a surprise vegan. He’s a political leader.
“Being vegan is one of the best things you can do for the environment,” says Laraque, and his passionate concern for the natural world, as well as for the political world, has lead the Green Party of Canada to name him Deputy Leader, according to the Calgary Herald.
Laraque, whose parents are from Haiti, has been highly involved in raising money for the country in the wake of January’s tragic earthquake, particularly for a children’s hospital in Port-au-Prince. In a “magic moment,” he even dedicated his one goal this season, the last of his career, to the nation.
After his conversion to veganism, Laraque became an active speaker on behalf of the movement and a member of the Green Party.
The enforcer, who has managed over 1,100 penalty minutes in his career, may be far from an experienced candidate, but that isn’t a problem for a small but growing party.
Leader Elizabeth May expects him to be able to make an impact regardless: “Georges is a not traditional politician and that’s why he’s my deputy leader,” May said. “People who have decades of experience in politics are not exactly getting Canadians turned on to getting involved in elections.”
Laraque, who she says “represents vitality and health,” can make a difference in voter turnout.
Laraque hasn’t entirely ruled out running for office one day. Who knows? President Gerald Ford was a University of Michigan football player. MLB star Jim Bunning has been a Senator for years, and Charles Barkley has even mulled public office.
Still, it’s hard to think of Laraque as a vegan politician and not doing this: