Story by Robin Popley
October is here, again, but unlike last year I’m not wearing my bermuda shorts. Sadly.
This months ‘Editor’s Insight’ takes a look to something I referred to a few months ago. Racism in football. To be honest, I am fed up of having to keep raising it, considering that we are supposed to be living in a civilised 21st century society where Social Media has enhanced our communication by bringing people of all ages and backgrounds together. Yet, perhaps, this is where the problem lies. By trying to be a jack of all trades to the masses, social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter, have indirectly created further problems, which have aided in the popularity of such television shows as Jeremy Kyle on ITV. Surely that is something we should avoid at all costs?
I, myself, have accounts on social media sites but I refrain myself from writing expletif language as I am also aware people from the world of business or charities I have worked for may not approve of my home personality if I were to do so. In fact, as was so expertly put in yesterday’s Edition of the Observer, if we (the ordinary public) were to put something that could be considered offensive, we would almost certainly – without question – be disciplined and in the most severe cases, be suspended from the workplace.
Therefore, why is it acceptable for a national footballer, to do this same thing?
The case of John Terry has become a rather precarious one. On the one hand, we have an ex-England captain who had been initially cleared of using racial slurs towards another professional, before then being prosecuted by another body for the same thing and a public display made of him: with the outcome being a 4 match ban. If that wasn’t odd enough, one of Terry’s key witnesses (Ashley Cole) from the original trial, has since been drawn up on his less than convincing testimony and is now undergoing formal action against him at their (the English pair’s) parent club, Chelsea. Yet, what heightened the almost obvious scenario, was Cole’s outburst on Twitter towards the end of last week when he accused the FA for being a bunch of female genitalia. I wouldn’t want to use the real word as it is was very offensive. The description in itself is pretty explicit.
So, why then is it, that both Terry and Cole are just the latest in a long line of footballers who have been before the courts where the outcome has usually come out favourably for the sportsmen in question? In the case of Ched Evans of Sheffield United and Marlon King (as was then a Hull City player) with having a lesser profile by comparison to the former Premier League stars, it is somewhat disheartening that it seems dependent on who you are, is what the outcome becomes.
I propose this to you, fellow football fans, who are reading my article. We, on a daily basis, have to find the means and measures to get by. How will afford our next meals? How will we afford to pay the bills? Moreover, the rent or the mortage, upon that house we bought before the big economic crash? Yet, by contrast, our footballing heroes can do as they please, STILL be rewarded financially whilst breaking the law – either directly or indirectly?
Therefore, in summary, who wouldn’t rather be Ashley Cole than on the dole? He knows the meer threat of a fine cannot truly hurt him. But if a proposed ban or long term suspension was put in place for the Chelsea defensive duo, it may yet prevent further players following suit. For that, I commend Alan Shearer, who called for that self-same outcome on MOTD.
It’s a long road but no-one and I mean NO ONE is above the law!
Thanks for reading;