Tag Archives: football

Taking the knee against racism shames the Tories – support England!

Taking the knee for racial justice is a gesture of solidarity and support i the fight for racial equality. It is taking a knee against racism. You would have thought that might be reasonably uncontroversial – unless you are a racist.

But the government has nailed its flag to the racist banner by supporting the minority of booing racists at England friendly warm-up matches for the Euro 2020 football tournament.

Although the government seems to have since backed down by claiming it now support the players statement against racism, the damage has sadly already been done.

This is of course part of a piece for a government that commissioned a report into racism with the intention that it should deny that racism exists.

Boris Johnson, whose racist track record is well known and for which he hasn’t apologised, is the spearhead of the assault on anti-racism.

Applaud footballer taking the knee against racism; boo our racist government

The message to black footballers is stopping moaning about racism and put up with it! The message to their white team mates is to stop being ‘woke’ by standing up for their team mates. The message to the rest of society is that it is the anti-racists that are the problem not the racists.

There is no other way to interpret this other than as the government teaming up with the far right.

Despite the war by the billionaire media and the government against BLM, a recent poll commissioned by the News Statesman showed a majority of the population think that more must be done to eradicate racism.

The truth is that it is an insulting lie that most white working-class people are supposedly racist.

Over many years of battle and struggle – of black and white – racist has been made non-respectable, although never eradicated, especially at an institutional level.

But the idea that we live in a “post-racial” world, where racism is naturally dying away or doesn’t exist in a deep or measningful way is for the birds.

The evidence is all around us, especially when the policies of this government are concerned – such as Priti Patel‘s racist refugee policies, the ongoing Home Office institutional racism against the Windrush generation, who still mostly have not been compensated and cases of gross injustice continue.

And whatever your background as a black person, you can’t escape racism, even if you are a Premier League footballer.

The shocking refusal of social media companies to clampdown on racists adds to the pain of the footballers who daily have too put up with racism in their social feeds or in stadia across Europe.

Take a knee – that’s what leadership really looks like

Footballers have shown their determination to carry on taking the knee for racial justice. That’s brilliant news. Gareth Southgate and his open letter to England fans has shown more leadership in his little finger than in the entire body of Boris Johnson as he flounders on the beaches of Cornwall.

Garteh Southgate’s open letter to England fans

The Tories and their racist supporters claim that they are against Taking the Knee because BLM is “Marxist”. The truth however is that BLM is a movement not a single organisation. In the UK there are literally hundreds of BLM organisations of different sizes, many of which, such as ourselves (BLMM) are not affiliated to BLM UK.

But nevertheless BLM UK is the ‘official’ organisation affiliated to the US body and maybe some of its members are Marxists or sympathetic to Marxist ideas. So what? Certainly the US group’s policies link the fight for racial justice to wider issues of social justice such as the fight against sexism or for Palestinian rights. We think that is to be applauded not vilified in a latter-day McCarthyite witchhunt.

However, whatever the policies of BLM UK, or of the individual views of the US founders or the organisations stated aims, BLM is much bigger than any single group – it is a movement with many different and competing political ideas. Those who Take A Knee or join protests for racial equality are making a statement against racism.

All such actions matter because they help to isolate and push back the racists. Unfortunately Boris Johnson and his racist government has sought to deliberately bolster not just booing racists but the Nazis that are amassing weapons in this country as they plot and plan to spread their hate-filled message with racist terrorism.

The best answer the England football team can give to the the racists within and outside government and across Europe is to bring football home.

QPR players defy racists to take the knee after scoring against Millwall

Well done to the QPR team for standing up to the racist.

But the club itself had previously (in September) put out a statement saying they would not be taking the knee but has now reversed that decision. Looks like there was a rebellion in the ranks. Excellent!

After scoring a goal against Millwall, Ilias Chair (and Bright Osayi-Samuel) celebrated by taking the knee.

As for Millwall FC, well what can we say?

Basically they bottled it on the official side, after a minority of fans booed ‘take the knee’ last weekend. The official response was to get players to stand in a circle holding hands, but many individuals ‘took the knee’ anyway.

Backlash from racist Tories against Take The Knee solidarity protests

There is clearly a backlash coming from the government, the right-wing media, the more backward elements at the top of some football clubs and the, thankfully, much smaller forces of the far right, to try and push back against anti-racism’s successes with the explosion of the Black Lives Matter movement.

They will not succeed. Black and white unite and fight! Solidarity forever!

Chair takes the knee in solidarity with BLM and the fight for racial equality

Tory ministers make apologies for far-right ‘take the knee’ booing

A minority of Millwall FC fans covered themselves in ignominy at the weekend when they booed black and white footballers ‘taking the knee’ to show solidarity with the fight for racial justice.

To its credit Millwall FC has chastised the booing racists among its supporters. The club said it was “dismayed and saddened” by the actions of the racist minority.

Across the country fans were returning to football stadia for the first time since the Covid pandemic began.

Some of the racist thugs associated with the Democratic Football Lads Alliance (DFLA), thought they would try a similar stunt at Spurs but instead supporters applauded the take the knee gesture of the football pros.

Similar take the knee happenings at matches across the country went off without a hitch, which is what makes the Millwall incident all the worse.

However, despite all right thinking people reacting with horror, that wasn’t the reaction of one Tory minister – George Eustice, the minister for the environment.

When asked about the racist incident and asked to condemn it, he failed to do so.

Asked on Sky News what he thought of the incident, he was more concerned with attacking BLM and fomenting ‘culture wars’ than he was with standing up to racism: “Well, look, I didn’t see that event.

“The issue of race and racial discrimination is something that we all take very, very seriously.

“My personal view is that Black Lives Matter, capital B, L and M, is actually a political movement that is different to what most of us believe in which is standing up for racial equality.

“But look, each individual can take their own choices about how they reflect this and I know a lot of people feel quite strongly about taking that approach.”

The government seems intent on doing its best to emulate Trump in whipping up racism.

Eustice’s alignment with the far-right is worrying, as is Priti Patel’s insistence in likening lawyers doing their jobs as “lefty activists”.

Patel even went as far as to say those campaigning to stop the deportation of people who came to this country from Jamaica when they were kids, as being an insult to the Windrush generation, when it is her government that created that scandal in the first place and of which the latest deportation flight to Jamaica is a part.

Take the knee: Tories trying to whip up racial division

Ok, so not everyone wants to take part in ‘take the knee’ events, and that is their prerogative, but to boo is to make an explicit statement of hostility, which can only be described as an endorsement of racism.

Tory minister James Cleverly said it was wrong to boo ‘taking the knee’, but then went on to make apologies for the racists:

‘Anyone who believes it was a racist act should read the views of those who booed and see they were doing it in reaction to the war memorials and statues of Churchill defaced by the BLM organisation and the extreme political views they hold and for which “taking the knee” is associated with.’

But there is more than one BLM organisation for a start, and the person or persons who wrote the graffiti on the Churchill statue were individuals on a demonstration of thousands

In truth Churchill was a racist – this is a statement of fact. But the Tories and their far right supporters are really just looking for excuses to undermine the movement.

The Tories are trying to play divide and rule and spread the lie that working class people are some how hostile to racism, implying that there are two working classes – one white and one black.

But this is of course far from the truth as this story from the summer of football fans in Birmingham marching against racism shows.

Greg Clarke’s racism shows British football is rotting from the head

One third of the players in the premier league are from black and minority ethnic backgrounds, but you wouldn’t know it from looking at the top of the game.

And where better to start than with the chairman of the Englsih Football Association Greg Clarke.

In comments to the culture and sport select committee in parliament yesterday, he managed to offend almost everyone.

Girls scared of getting hurt by the ball says Clarke

He wrote-off half of humanity when he claimed that girls and women were scared of getting hurt by the football.

Tell that to Megan Rapinoe!

Megan Rapinoe

Being gay a ‘life choice’ says Clarke

He then moved on to gay people, where he said sexuality was a “life choice”.

Racist generalisations about Asian fans and players

 As for people from South Asian backgrounds, he reckons they are more interested in being a doctor or accountants, which apparently is meant to explain why there are so few Asian people involved at the higher levels of the game.

According to Clarke, there’s “a lot more South Asians than there are Afro-Caribbeans” in the FA IT department because “they have different career interests”.

“Coloured” like its 1950 or apartheid South Africa

And just to cap it off he decided to deploy the racist 1950s word coloured to descrribe black people.

This all comes after months of Black Lives Matter movement protests.

This is after the FA claimed to be supporting the cause of racial equality by urging players and clubs to get behind taking the knee.

The sad truth is that the people who run the game are far behind the times and need to be cleared out wholesale.

Players should strike action against Football Association’s racist bosses

It is not surprising when people like Clarke are running the game that such little progress has been made on diversity. There are still just three non-white managers in the whole of the professional game.

Fans – black and white – deserve better than this.

BLMM urges black players and their white colleagues to demand that this happens and to threaten strike action until it does.

As campaign group Kick it Out has pointed out, the FA launched its diversity code just a couple of weeks ago – it’s such a shame the FA don’t follow it!