Racism in Football: What should be done?

This is evidently titled racism in football, due to the huge media speculation surrounding the case. We’ve had a prolonged saga with John Terry and Anton Ferdinand, the slightly shorter ordeal of Luis Suarez and Patrice Evra and also, seemingly, incidents stemming from the fans in the stands.

A lot is happening in football in terms of racism, but it’s astronomically more than just football. It’s society. Modern society. It’s life.

Racism in any walk is completely vile and unnecessary. And with me being a football fan, like many others, who share my concerns over the matter, we were standing and watching not a great deal happen to resolve the matter. But after many recent incidents, action seems to finally be in the pipeline.

But looking into the approaches that are likely to be adopted, it is all wrong and way way off the mark. A “black union” is being mentioned. Essentially a union made up of black people opposing racism. Now I can’t pretend to be in their position having never been racially abused, but I do understand their frustration. Taking vicious remarks based on such a shallow subject like skin colour must be so upsetting and infuriating. But making a group for black people isn’t the way to go and is in fact racist in itself.

Without wishing to sound racist myself here, as I am wholeheartedly not and oppose the problem hugely. I believe “black people” sometimes alienate themselves when objecting racism. Just like this potential union is. How can you say “I’m against racism…….now all us blacks get together and fight it”. Racist in itself.

Now I admire their stance and passion to overcome the problem, but there are countless people of all races that want to fight this disease in society. How about just a “fight against racism” union? A group that will oppose racism in exactly the same manner but invites all races to join. Surely a better way to go?

Another approach, which Gordon Taylor has suggested, is a U.K. version to the “Rooney Rule”. A legislation brought into the N.F.L. in 2003 which states that a black person must be interviewed for every managerial and coaching job that arises. Again, this is ridiculous.

To me racism is alienating people for their skin colour. Now, to say a black person must be interviewed for a certain job just because he is black is hypocritical, and again, racist. You can’t say, “blacks aren’t getting interviewed because they are black and the way to overcome this is to interview them…….because they are black!” Nonsensical to think this is politically right or the way forward on the matter.

People, not just blacks, get interviewed off the back of their credentials and of course application. Skin colour does not come into this.

Us as a sport and as a mixed society need to get together and fight for the cause. The policies used must be jail sentences, hefty fines and lengthy bans. Punishments of severity, not just a slap on the wrists. Make examples of these lowlifes. I believe that a huge difference could be made if all races sang from the same hymn sheet. Racism incidents will drop significantly.

However, we need to slightly alter our approaches and think about what is said in the argument for it. Now I am strongly with everyone behind their desire to eradicate racism in football and indeed life. But you cannot aim to kick racism out and then be racist in your approach towards it.

Saying, this union is for blacks, is racist. Saying, interview him because he is black, is racist. These are not the methods we should be adopting.

The objective is right and I hope the matter is resolved. But we need to think into what were saying and come together as one. Not have one race fighting for themselves.

 

Written by Michael Collins

Follow him on Twitter @RudeDog86

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