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The Importance of Sport (NEW CONCEPTS)
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Mick Harper
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In: London
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We're all heavyweight intellectuals here so we fall into two groups 1) those not interested in sport and 2) those interested in sport but who don't think it's intellectually important.

But since we're AE-ists it's time to challenge the assumption in 2). Unfortunately those in category 1) will not be able to join in because people not interested in sport cannot find anything about sport interesting or indeed important. It's a fairly understandable reaction to being surrounded on all sides by braying multitudes who think it is.

Here's what started this chain of thought off and it makes a suitable opener because it's not primarily about sport at all. This is a Daily Telegraph story about the Spurs striker Adebayor. Two things popped out.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/teams/tottenham-hotspur/11618640/Emmanuel-Adebayor-accuses-brother-of-holding-knife-to-his-throat-in-third-Facebook-rant.html

The bulk of the story is a verbatim account by Adebayor concerning the very bad behaviour of his immediate family, posted up by him on Facebook. Now you will see that it is incredibly actionable (as m'learned friends put it) on the part of various family members. How did the Telegraph lawyers pass it? Publishing somebody's Facebook writings accurately is no defence to a libel action. They cannot possibly have checked out the story as being true (which is a defence to a libel action).

It was, I decided, because the Telegraph lawyers were sort of racist. They were kind of assuming that Togolese deadbeats wouldn't rush off to the law courts. But this immediately reminded me of my own racism. I was thoroughly relishing this account of black family dysfunction. It ticked all my boxes.
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Chad


In: Ramsbottom
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I was thoroughly relishing this account of black family dysfunction.

Would you have relished it just as much if (for instance) the player in question had been (say) Sol Campbell... or do you think maybe your own sporting tribalism might have played some small part?
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Mick Harper
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Hatty made that point but I don't think so. I have always disliked Adebayor even when he was an Arsenal player. He just looks like a criminal deadbeat. Sol Cambell strikes a rather noble figure though, ironically, he really does look like a baboon with his beetled brow ridges.

It may be place rather than race. Togolese dysfunctional families are somehow more reprehensible than in Peckham. How was your racism evoked, Chad? Anyone?
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Chad


In: Ramsbottom
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How was your racism evoked, Chad?

While I was (very recently) sifting through job applications and found myself summarily rejecting any with an Islamic name.

(Though I did take on a black guy and a Portuguese.)
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Chad


In: Ramsbottom
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Incidentally, the black guy had a degree from a Yorkshire University... but I didn't hold that against him because he was a United fan.

And the Portuguese (a Porto fan) swore to adopt United as his second team, if I gave him the job.
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Mick Harper
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I am surprised, being born so far away from Old Trafford, that he wasn't already a United fan.
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Wile E. Coyote


In: Arizona
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Mick Harper wrote:
How was your racism evoked, Chad? Anyone?


Not sure where you guys are going with this.

I fear you might be under the false assumption that footie fans are racist.

Not so, they never have been, never will be.

Nope football fans hurl "racist abuse" towards some members of the opposing team. They are, in effect participating in the contest to knock the opposing players of their game, and this barracking is highly effective (you just compare home stats aganst away), if the opponents have a bald player, a fat one, a girly one, then they will, in fact, come in for equal abuse.....football fans are therefore equal opportunity abusers. The idea is to hurl the most effective abuse to put the opposition of their game, and also to pressurise the ref and linesman into backing their side.

The more hostile the atmosphere the better, that is why the opposition plays initially to quieten the crowd.

If the opposition goalie makes a mistake, then the home crowd will mercilessly pick on him for the rest of the game, to try and generate another error.

I have never been to a football game, where your folks are racist to a member of your own side....providing (and this is important) your foreign import is putting in a "fair shift".....It just does not happen, your home fans simply don't give a toss about colour, providing their team is trying hard and winning.
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Mick Harper
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Very liberal, Coyote, but I didn't mention (nor was I concerned with) football fans, or indeed anything football-ish. Take a deep breath and try again.
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Chad


In: Ramsbottom
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I fear you might be under the false assumption that footie fans are racist.

Wiley, football fans ARE racist... we are ALL inherently racist.

Some of us are better at masking it than others (even to the point of denying it to ourselves) while others take pride in their overt racism... It's there within all of us, whether we accept it or not.

Racism... tribalism... same thing.

The interesting point you make about football fans however, demonstrates how marvellously flexible our tribal boundaries can be... we shift them to suit our particular needs in any particular situation.

I know a City fan (and member of the BNP) who used to think the sun shone out of Yaya Toure's arse, but now that he is seeking a move 'he should fuck off back to Africa.. the ugly twat'.

Tribal boundaries are never random, they must always have defined limits, but they can be placed just about anywhere the situation demands... and don't have to always necessarily follow racial lines.
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Mick Harper
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Some of us are better at masking it than others (even to the point of denying it to ourselves) while others take pride in their overt racism... It's there within all of us, whether we accept it or not.

Yes, that was broadly my point. The Telegraph lawyers would not have taken the same decision if for instance they had been dealing with (the white) Joey Barton's family (which includes a convicted murderer) because they would know they would immediately run into legal difficulties.

My own racism was invoked when I read about Adebayor's family and found myself enjoying its tribulations rather than feeling compassion. Of course the same might happen with Joey Barton since, pace Chad, he represents a different tribe, the south London underclass. (I am south London petty bourgeois.)

I find the same thing happens when I am watching Nightmare Neighbours Next Door and other programmes of that ilk. Which regrettably I have a considerable yen for.
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Wile E. Coyote


In: Arizona
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Chad wrote:
we are ALL inherently racist


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bGW-qnlrMjs
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Wile E. Coyote


In: Arizona
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Chad wrote:

I know a City fan (and member of the BNP) who used to think the sun shone out of Yaya Toure's arse, but now that he is seeking a move 'he should fuck off back to Africa.. the ugly twat'.


So come on Chad, do you know a Man U fan who racially abused a Man U player of whatever colour who put in a "fair shift?"
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Chad


In: Ramsbottom
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No of course not, you miss the point... Toure is only getting abuse from city fans now that he wants to leave the tribe.

You don't abuse your own.
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Wile E. Coyote


In: Arizona
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Wile is a Luddite, you Volks fail to appreciate the real enemy. They are silently taking over while you bicker. In no time at all we will all be out of a job. You need to take sides now. You are either with me or against me on this.

Watch this and be very, very scared.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5FGVgMsiv1s

There is not two sides to this COIN. Make your minds up. Dont hold me back. The time to act is now.
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Chad


In: Ramsbottom
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A tad off-thread don't you think Wiley?

You haven't stopped taking your meds again... have you?
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