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Tranquility
2004-Nov-18, 04:19 PM
I don't know if many of you have seen this, but there was a football (soccer for you guys in the US :D ) match last night between Spain and England, in Madrid, in Real Madrid's stadium in fact, Santiago Bernabeu.

The game was actually a friendly match, so had no actual importance. What struck me was the Spanish fans' chanting when England's black players, Ashley Cole and Shaun Wright-Phillips would touch the ball, and the fans making monkey noises.

This comes after Spanish fans did similar racist chantings in the U-21 football game between Spain and England. Also, Spain's coach Luis Aragones passed some racist comments about France's dark-skinned star Thierry Henry in a football match between Spain and France and didn't even have the courtesy to apologize to him yet.

I mean I would expect this to happen in a relatively undeveloped country perhaps like in Yugoslavia or Serbia or Macedonia (because it has happened there often in international matches) but it's a surprise to me frankly for something like this to happen in Spain, in the stadium of the greatest European soccer team in history, Real Madrid, and by their fans. I'm not naive enough to assume that racism is now non-existent, but I thought racism in western Europe is too uncommon for something like this to happen in a massive sporting arena. What's your take?

BTW you can read about the incident, and the followups from England and Spain, here (http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/internationals/4018421.stm).

Bawheid
2004-Nov-18, 04:50 PM
This does crop up regularly when teams play European ties, particularly in former Eastern Bloc countries. It has occured in recent years in Italy and elsewhere but rarely in the north or west of Europe. I don't think it happens in Scotland any more but did in the 80 and 90s when black players first arrived. (Scotland is a very white country, with a tiny minority of non-whites.)

I hesitate to say this for fear of being misconstrued, but the Spanish manager's tirade contained only one accurate statement, that Thierry Henry is black. The rest of the phrase is easy to find, I won't link to it, but is highly abusive. Not being Spanish I don't know whether he meant "black" to be a simple description, or to be integral to the insult. This is unlike Ron Atkinson's (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/tv_and_radio/3648051.stm) recent outburst which did contain a highly derogatory term, and was rightly condemned as racist.

Away from football it varies, most people aren't; some people are. Some people sound racist, but aren't; others don't, but are.

Edited to add link.

dvb
2004-Nov-18, 04:52 PM
I know of 2 people that I talk to from time to time who have expressed their racism. One of them lives in Denmark, and the other in The Netherlands. The person from Denmark that I talk to isn't very fond of Turks or Germans. I don't recall what his argument was towards Germans other than the way that they dress. His argument towards Turkish immigrants is a little more founding though. He tells me that people from Turkey come to his country, and then expect to live for free off of Denmarks social services. I can understand ones disagreement with that.

I'm not saying that all people from these countries are racist either though. Just speaking from what I've experienced. Also, I have no problem with the way that Germans dress. :)

Argos
2004-Nov-18, 05:06 PM
I think prejudice against Germans is about xenophobia (the "fear" of the different), rather than racism. Brazilian players suffer a lot with it in Europe (though most of the time itīs about plain racism, not xenophobia). Just the other day I saw Roberto Carlos complaining of it. Well, what can I say...

dvb
2004-Nov-18, 05:10 PM
I think the cases of prejudice against Germans are about xenophobia (the "fear" of the different), rather than racism. Brazilian players suffer a lot with it in Europe (though most of the time itīs about plain racism, not xenophobia). Just the other day I saw Roberto Carlos complaining of it. Well, what can I say...

Don't get me wrong. Germans are among the friendliest people I've met on the web from Europe.

worzel
2004-Nov-18, 05:13 PM
I know of 2 people that I talk to from time to time who have expressed their racism. One of them lives in Denmark, and the other in The Netherlands. The person from Denmark that I talk to isn't very fond of Turks or Germans.
I'm not sure if that is racism or what I would call "culturalism" by which I mean a dislike of people, whatever their race, of a certain culture (e.g. country and/or religion) because of the way they behave. Because race, culture, and religion are often highly correlated it is difficult to distinguish between the two. I know many people who feel guilty about their closet racism when in fact what they dislike is another culture's customs, attitudes (e.g. towards women), etc.

Candy
2004-Nov-18, 05:16 PM
racism is everywhere 8-[

2004-Nov-18, 06:36 PM
racism is everywhere 8-[

That's exactly what I was going to say, mate...

I work with Scots, Iraqis, Lithuanians, Latvians, Russians, Spaniards and Portuguese people...The way some of the locals treat them is apalling. :( :(

To me, it just seems like a good opportunity to understand others' culture...Did you know, that Latvia is 86 years old today??

Makgraf
2004-Nov-18, 07:07 PM
I know of 2 people that I talk to from time to time who have expressed their racism. One of them lives in Denmark, and the other in The Netherlands. The person from Denmark that I talk to isn't very fond of Turks or Germans. I don't recall what his argument was towards Germans other than the way that they dress.
I can think of at least one reason why a Dane might not like Germany.


His argument towards Turkish immigrants is a little more founding though. He tells me that people from Turkey come to his country, and then expect to live for free off of Denmarks social services. I can understand ones disagreement with that.
I've heard stuff like this quite frequently from Europeans. They have fairly huge welfare nets which can attract immigrants who come not to work, but to live on welfare (iirc there was a survey that something like 40% of all people on Danish welfare were Muslim immigrants). This naturally creates tensions.

Candy
2004-Nov-18, 07:27 PM
Why dislike anyone, unless they really get on your nerves?

Ok, this guy at work gets on my nerves - he's black (and he wears cowboy boots). But I'm pretty sure his demeanor would get on my nerves anyway.

Candy
2004-Nov-18, 07:28 PM
I disliked a white woman, and she ended up quiting. God, I hated her.

Candy
2004-Nov-18, 07:34 PM
I do like some people. I call them nice people. Is there such a thing as nice people? :D

2004-Nov-18, 08:05 PM
Lots of people that I work with are Muslims. But, as Candy says, why dislike someone if they don't get on your nerves??

The racism displayed at the Spain-England match was abhorrent. That said: back in the 1980s, most black footballers were routinely subject to monkey-chants at English matches...As far as I'm concerned, we are all equal? #-o #-o #-o

worzel
2004-Nov-18, 08:20 PM
I've heard stuff like this quite frequently from Europeans. They have fairly huge welfare nets which can attract immigrants who come not to work, but to live on welfare (iirc there was a survey that something like 40% of all people on Danish welfare were Muslim immigrants). This naturally creates tensions.
This really annoys me. Of course people have the right to be angry with their government for allowing their welfare system to be abused. But I don't think you can blame economic migrants for taking the opportunnity. How do we know how we'd react if we weren't lucky enough to be born into the 1st world.

Swift
2004-Nov-18, 11:03 PM
I'll give you my experience on this; I don't know if this reflects some "truth".

I lived in France for about a year in the mid-80's. I was asked by several people about racism in the United States. In the 80's or today, racism is a more "visible" issue in the US (whether you personally think any groups or individuals are being discriminated against because of their race). Many of these people would make statements such as "you have racism in the US, but in my country, we don't". One gentleman in particular was from Sweden; I remember asking him, is it that you don't have racism, or that since 99% of your country are blond, blue-eyed, white Lutherans, you don't have anyone to be racist against (and yes, I know those numbers are made up, I was just making a point).

I think racism is part of a broader human characteristic of xenophobia, as Argos put it; a fear of the different. Depending upon the groups involved, that difference may be based on race, religion, social class or standing, income, culture, profession, favorite football team, or a dozen other things. I remember a TV story from years ago about the discrimination in Japan against people who made leather, since it was considered "unclean" to work with parts from dead animals.

And as Candy and others have said, this is a universal. It is our challenge as intelligent humans to put aside our pre-conceived notions and to treat others fairly.

Makgraf
2004-Nov-18, 11:28 PM
It's probably the homogeneity of Europe in the first place that allowed for such expansive welfare systems to develop in the first place. People are comfortable paying higher taxes in exchange for making sure that people like them have a safety net to fall back on. When an immigration system starts letting in people not like them and there's a general impression that the people coming in are coming in to leach off your welfare system, well people are going to get angry. Combine this with the fact that many European countries make it very hard to accquire citizenship, especially if you're say a Muslim immigrant. There's a large ethnic componant to citizenship where you're not considered a true member of the country if you're not from it. Thus we have a permenant underclass being created and widespread hatred of them being fanned in the general population. The situation is going to get a lot worse before things get better (if they get better).

Fram
2004-Nov-19, 09:19 AM
Racism is sadly booming in Flanders. Many people here are racists, and more and more of them are quite open about it (which is alright in a way), and act like it (which isn't right at all). I sometimes have racists thoughts as well, but when I'm thinking clearer again, I know that I'm generalizing. Like, we have an Albanian mafia here (mostly into forced prostitution and stuff), and a lot of the Albanians in Flanders are connected to it (perpetrators or victims). So when I read something about them, I sometimes think 'Albanians are bad' (my thoughts are very simplistic sometimes :D ). On second thoughts, I see that criminally inclined Albanians make a living by exploiting the differences between poor Albania and rich Belgium. Most 'normal' Albanians still are in Albania, and the ones that are here don't make the news.

One other thing I have a problem with are immigrants who claim that everything that is said or done against them is a racist thing. If they are found to be on a train without paying and they are fined, the controller is a racist... They are hollowing out the term racism and thereby ruining their own cause, sadly.

2004-Nov-19, 09:53 AM
One of my Iraqi colleagues overheard me making comment about him singing something Arabic in a chill...Until he asked me, he thought I was being disparaging about his culture when, in fact, I was being complimentary...

I suppose, that having to put-up with so many slights, immigrants do sometimes tend to get the wrong idea. But, who's fault is that?? 8-[ 8-[

AstroSmurf
2004-Nov-19, 10:22 AM
Racism is more or less a continous issue here in Sweden. You find it in certain situations, such as football, bouncers at clubs and so on, and there have been a number of ugly incidents. Fortunately, the few right-wing parties who have it on their programme mostly try to sneak it in, which doesn't help their respectability, and so far, they've lacked enough support to be more than fringe groups. We have many left-wing groups who also oppose them rather vehemently. A few years ago, they tried to get more established by running for church council positions, since those elections have had a history of low voter turnout, but a public campaign put a stop to that.

A larger problem is that immigrants have a very high barrier to enter the society, in that they're disregarded in interviews, their degrees are discounted, meaning that we have a very well-educated corps of taxi drivers, pizza bakers and cleaning ladies :evil: Further, it often takes years to process their applications for residency and work permits, meaning that they start their life in Sweden with a long, enforced period on the dole. This doesn't exactly help their employment figures either.

(This thread is waxing very political - sorry...)

kucharek
2004-Nov-19, 11:01 AM
Don't get me wrong. Germans are among the friendliest people I've met on the web from Europe.

http://fool.exler.ru/sm/box2.gif You'd better believe it! http://fool.exler.ru/sm/susel.gif



:lol:

dvb
2004-Nov-19, 11:39 AM
Don't get me wrong. Germans are among the friendliest people I've met on the web from Europe.

http://fool.exler.ru/sm/box2.gif You'd better believe it! http://fool.exler.ru/sm/susel.gif

Very cute! :)

Perhaps one of the biggest racial issues in Canada, is with the First Nations (http://www.afn.ca/) people to be politically correct. Often refered to as Indians even by themselves. Generations later, the same arguments still come up. They say that the white man took their land, and this I won't deny for a second. What I have a problem with, is those who hold people like me accountable for actions taken well over a hundred years ago. I've been in fights as a teenager over these issues, and I wasn't the one who started them either. Our government gives them more benefits than any other race that lives here. Those who live on a reserve (commonly known as a reservation in the US), don't have to pay income tax, and have their houses built for free. Someone who is a status Indian can also hunt at any time of the year with no limit and without a license, travel across the US/Canadian border at their own free will, and receive free dental and eye care. The list goes on.

I don't have a problem with this myself, and the government has been paying out for many years to make up for its mistakes. Conditions here are now better for them than they were 200 years ago, yet the same argument arises every time. I'm sorry for what happened to them, but please don't point the finger at me. I was born here just like they were. I'm also 1/4 Mohawk, but because of my light complexion, I'm still refered to as a white boy. My mother is 1/2 Mohawk, and my grandma is an FBI (Full Blooded Indian). ;)

Mohawks are refered to as Sixth Nations for whatever reason I'm not sure, but they generally don't have the same gripes as many First Nations Indians do. At least, not from my experiences.

Argos
2004-Nov-19, 11:39 AM
I've heard stuff like this quite frequently from Europeans. They have fairly huge welfare nets which can attract immigrants who come not to work, but to live on welfare.

The welfare system does not explain the prejudice against the mentioned football players, who are zillionaires. What goes on in Europe is a mix of racism and xenophobia. However, thatīs not a European trait alone. A certain unease before "the other" is a common place, and itīs part of mankindīs evolutionary baggage. All we have to do is tame it, through reason.

worzel
2004-Nov-19, 12:27 PM
I've heard stuff like this quite frequently from Europeans. They have fairly huge welfare nets which can attract immigrants who come not to work, but to live on welfare.

The welfare system does not explain the prejudice against the mentioned football players, who are zillionaires. What goes on in Europe is a mix of racism and xenophobia. However, thatīs not a European trait alone. A certain unease before "the other" is a common place, and itīs part of mankindīs evolutionary baggage. All we have to do is tame it, through reason.
I think in football it's just a matter of "how can we rattle the other side?"

Bawheid
2004-Nov-19, 12:50 PM
In some cases the abuse of footballers is the crowd picking on a player's most obvious characteristic and trying to put them off or annoy them sufficiently to do something stupid. The Old Firm game tomorrow will be an example of that.

In some cases the most obvious characteristic is race, and the crowd will abuse that player accordingly, particularly if their team has no black players. While some fans are racist, many are not but see football as part of the entertainment industry and regard players as highly enough paid to put up with anything. As always, ignorance is the problem.

(I took so long drafting this Worzel's post intervened.)

Fram
2004-Nov-19, 01:36 PM
In some cases the abuse of footballers is the crowd picking on a player's most obvious characteristic and trying to put them off or annoy them sufficiently to do something stupid. The Old Firm game tomorrow will be an example of that.

In some cases the most obvious characteristic is race, and the crowd will abuse that player accordingly, particularly if their team has no black players. While some fans are racist, many are not but see football as part of the entertainment industry and regard players as highly enough paid to put up with anything. As always, ignorance is the problem.

(I took so long drafting this Worzel's post intervened.)

I've recently spoken to someone from Beveren. It's a little city in Flanders who have a great football team. They even play European football (Uefa cup, in a group with Stuttgart e.a.). They have a very special players policy, getting almost everyone out of the Ivory Coast. So, normally, 9 or 10 out of the 11 players are black Africans.
Now, Beveren is one of the cities where the Vlaams Blok (recently renamed to Vlaams Belang), the racist party of Flanders (they have been convicted!), got some 30 % of the votes. But apparently, every black person in the city is treated very well by the common white person, because chance is they are a footballer or family of them. Moroccans, Turks, ... are treated much differently (not by everyone of course, but by that 30 %), because they are not players on the team and so, by stupid definition, 'bad people' (I try to put it politely).
If tomorrow, the 11 black players are changed with 11 Turkish players, you can guess how the behaviour of the people would change accordingly. Stupid hypocrites...

2004-Nov-19, 02:40 PM
Why can't we all just learn to treat all people for what they are - people? #-o #-o

Or, am I missing something?? #-o

Bawheid
2004-Nov-19, 02:42 PM
You're not missing a thing Pete, unfortunately many people are.

Swift
2004-Nov-19, 02:42 PM
Fram story about black footballers reminds me of my experience in the southern United States (I'm from the northern US). When I lived in the South I had a co-worker in my lab who was black (I'm white). He gave me his thoughts about the difference between northern racism and southern racism in the US. His opinion was in the north, whites would generally not say bad things about blacks as a group (like all blacks steal or are lazy), but would have very few black friends. In the south is was just the opposite, you would have white who would openly make statements like "all those (bad word for blacks) steal, you can't trust any of them". But then you would say to this person, but one of your best friends is Joe and he's black, and they'd say, "oh, but Joe's OK".

kucharek
2004-Nov-19, 02:42 PM
Why can't we all just learn to treat all people for what they are - people? #-o #-o
Sometimes I've the impression if we would treat people like dogs, they would get better treatment than we give them now. :(

Captain Kidd
2004-Nov-19, 03:13 PM
Fram story about black footballers reminds me of my experience in the southern United States (I'm from the northern US). When I lived in the South I had a co-worker in my lab who was black (I'm white). He gave me his thoughts about the difference between northern racism and southern racism in the US. His opinion was in the north, whites would generally not say bad things about blacks as a group (like all blacks steal or are lazy), but would have very few black friends. In the south is was just the opposite, you would have white who would openly make statements like "all those (bad word for blacks) steal, you can't trust any of them". But then you would say to this person, but one of your best friends is Joe and he's black, and they'd say, "oh, but Joe's OK".That's kinda what I've heard from an opposite experience with me living in the South.

I've been up in the Northeast often and have friends and relatives there. Here in the South, like Swift said, there's talk, but for the most part it's just that, talk. The whole "the South's going to rise again" thing. But it's mostly posturing said amoung friends and usually over a cold one.

I've also had some black friends say that they've actually been treated worse inthe North than the South. Again like what Swift said, openly there's not much said but behind closed doors it can be a different story and that at least down here if the person's bigoted, they're openly bigoted. (I've also had some say the opposite to be fair.)

Now what can really get hackles up pretty much anywhere are inter-racial relationships. Both sides can get really agitated over that. But I've seen a lot of improvements in that regard.

Glom
2004-Nov-19, 04:40 PM
The good news is that Madrid's Olympic bid has taken a turn for the worst. That puts London the front runner to challenge Paris who seem the favourites.

Argos
2004-Nov-20, 12:33 PM
But then you would say to this person, but one of your best friends is Joe and he's black, and they'd say, "oh, but Joe's OK".

In a slight variation, African descendants around here are said to have a "white soul" when they are "good". I decry such remarks. Racism is the supreme idiocy of the human genre.

Disinfo Agent
2004-Nov-20, 06:43 PM
I've heard stuff like this quite frequently from Europeans. They have fairly huge welfare nets which can attract immigrants who come not to work, but to live on welfare (iirc there was a survey that something like 40% of all people on Danish welfare were Muslim immigrants). This naturally creates tensions.
I find this kind of argument annoying. First of all, many immigrants remain illegal for a long time, so they are not entitled to social benefits. If anything, that should save the state money.
Secondly, everyone knows the number of children born per family in Eastern Europe has been decreasing. We need more people to be able to sustain social services! :evil:

Bawheid
2004-Dec-29, 04:41 PM
A Scottish football fan (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/4132661.stm) has been convicted of racist abuse. The good news is that another fan reported him to the police and gave evidence in court.