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John Terry and the 'unacceptability of racism'

South Bank Hank

Nov 4, 2003
Interesting updates from the trial.

It's alleged that John Terry "used words based on Anton Ferdinand's membership of a racial group, allegedly said in response to a physical gesture from Ferdinand relating to his well publicised alleged affair with a teammate's wife".
It's been claimed that "Terry called Anton Ferdinand black, not in isolation but surrounded by highly offensive swearwords, that John Terry doesn't deny saying those words, that the defense saw this as 'exagerrated sarcasm', while the prosecution saw the words as 'offensive and insulting' ".
(Paraphrased from Sky Sports News report).

Racism is racism and thus unacceptable, that is my fundamental belief. However, this begs the question: Is it really acceptable to purposely insult/offend/anger someone, then look to prosecute for being insulted/offended/angered in return, albeit with an escalation in the response.

While society is correct in seeking to stamp out racism in every guise, this just seems very wrong to me. I can't make up my mind whether Terry's stupidity will be used to make an example or whether Ferdinand is putting the cause even further back. Is what happened really any different to aggressively jabbing someone in the arm and then complaining when they punch you in the face?

BTW, I don't know the full details of the case beyond what was reported above as I haven't been swayed by any of the salacious news coverage either way as they themselves don't know the facts.