Archive for the 'sport' Category

Luis Suárez the Racist

As a person who favours a belt and braces, stitch in time, spare the rod and spoil the child approach to dealing with racism I am glad Luis Suárez was punished for whatever he might have said to Evra. However, the drumbeat of “Suárez the racist” over the last few hours on social media is getting on my tits.

1.“Negro” in Rioplatense Spanish is so not the equivalent of “nigger” in English.
2.It may be used to form part of a racial insult but it doesn’t have to be.
3.My wife’s family uses it to refer to her late father; “en la época del Negro..”, “el Negro alguna vez dijo..” etc. Are they racists?
4.You don’t even have to be black to be “un negro”. Those who want an example of a “negro rosarino” should look no further than Gerardo Martino.
5.“But you would never say that if he had, for example, referred to a Jewish player as a ‘kike’.” Indeed I would not; ‘kike’ has only one clear and racially insulting meaning.
6. So am I sure Suárez was not trying to racially insult Evra? Of course not, I wasn’t there. It was his word against Evra’s. But I am glad, to be on the safe side, he was punished. I can think of other cases I wish the FA had taken a similarly firm approach to.
7. Apart from his own recklessness, Suárez gets this treatment not because he is a new Himmler but because he fits the uppity dago stereotype: not quite white, cheeky, always looking for a shortcut, indifferent to gentlemanly customs, better at his job than he is perceived to have a right to be etc. And as – thank God – we have to treat black players with proper respect these days, some find it necessary to look elsewhere to display their moral superiority, in some cases even their racial superiority. All in the name of anti-racism, of course.


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