John Terry Racism Row: Chelsea’s Andre Villas-Boas And Arsenal’s Wenger Are Badly Wrong
JOHN Terry Racism Saga: Did Chelsea captain John Terry racially abuse QPR’s Anton Ferdinand? We do not know. Terry says his words have been taken out of context and misunderstood. But the allegation is enough to sully Terry’s name:
The Mail leads with news that Sky has handed “unseen footage” to the FA.
The word “unseen” suggests that there is something worth seeing. But we don’t know if there is. All we know is that Sky has delivered footage from its 20 cameras to the FA to view.
Arsene Wenger, the Arsenal manger, sheds few a words on the matter:
“It came to me, how much credit can you give to something that is said on the pitch in a passionate situation? How deep do you read into it? If you have played football, you have said something to your friends; sometimes that they are an idiot – but you do not really think he’s an idiot. And that’s what I mean, in a passionate situation inside the game doesn’t mean that you can say anything. But you are not always politically correct on the pitch.”
Wenger is wrong. This is not about political correctness. This about racial abuse. The words “black c**t” are not taken lightly, but backed by 400 years of racial abuse against blacks. If political correctness means it unacceptable to racilly abuse a man in public, then we’re all for it.
“The debate is: Do you want every player to be followed by a camera? And analyse completely what he said after the game? That’s what we should do?”
Is this about fairness? Is Terry unlucky? Well, you’d be fool to suppose that Terry alone has ever used derogatory words, albeit ones he claims were innocent, against another player on the pitch. But Terry is the England captain. His actions are more likely to be closely observed than those of other players.
“Racism is stupid. Compared to 15 years ago, when I arrived, football has become much more international, England has become much more international, a lot more tolerant, a lot more open-minded. Yes, there is an issue, but there is an issue of all kinds of abuse. I have worked for 15 years in England and I have been abused how many times? And that doesn’t shock anybody. And the media has a part to play as well. It is not only about racism. Any abuse. And what is done in football against abuse? Nothing. I would like to see people sitting in my seat for one day and hear what people chant. And you know it’s completely wrong. It’s the same as racism. For me, it’s racism anyway.”
It’s not racism to call Wenger a paeodphile. It’s revolting, stupid and wrong. But it is not racism. Not everything is racism. Racism reduces the victim. Wenger is not called a paedo by rival fans because he is white, tall and French. He is called one because the idiots who do it think it will hurt him. Does the peadophile community take offence at the chanting? Do they bridle at the idea that all you need is bag of sweet and cheeky smile, as the song goes, to lure a child? Do they shake their heads and complain that not all peados are so lazy and cheap, and you might need aPlaystation or X Factor tickets to be successful? No, it is not racism. Racism dehamunises the victim, reducing their individuality to a false, deliberately insulting, constructed stereotype.
Wenger shows that racism has become trivialised.
QPR manager Neil Warnock has his own view:
“The FA have made it quite clear they don’t expect us to make statements and quite rightly so. The English justice system has to be adhered to.”
No comment is still a comment.
And with every no comment more pressure is piled upon Terry.
Get this from Chelsea manager Andre Villas-Boas:
“All of the players have been quiet about it because we know what happened. Nothing happened, so there is nothing to discuss.”
Nothing to discuss? So. Why add to the discussion, then?
The Mirror piles in:
John Terry race row: Damning new details as Anton Ferdinand denies on-pitch conversation
The media are taking a position, palpably keen to see Terry undone.
They should stick to the facts.