How not to tackle a problem

Ignore it, and think it will go away.
Deny there is a problem.
Blame the victim and say “It is all a misunderstanding.”

The Baroda crowd at the fifth one day international started the racist monkey chant; Andrew Symonds reported the issue and the BCCI response revealed a dinosaur who hasn’t yet realized that he is on a path to extinction. Even more appalling was the response from the Baroda Police Commissioner C.P. Thakur “Symonds mistook their chanting for racial abuse because he couldn't understand what they're saying. Obviously he can't understand Gujarati and Hindi languages." The BCCI secretary, Niranjan Shah, said that Symonds shouldn’t feel bad because it is all a misunderstanding and that the “Truth is the Truth”.

Not only does the best player of the series have to tolerate racial abuse, does he also have to be labeled a liar by the BCCI secretary? This is no way to treat a visiting team. In the last one day game at Mumbai, Symonds had to listen to the racist jeers as he walked in to bat and also had to listen to it when he walked back to the pavilion. Instead of feeling happy that India got another wicket, it was revulsion that I felt, a revulsion at who we are. An Australian photographer took pictures of the crowd's appalling behavior and only then did the BCCI acknowledge the problem. The police booked four people from the Wankhede Stadium for "misbehavior!" I think we need new hate crime laws in the Indian Penal Code.

Look at yourselves, you are disgusting.

These bastards should be banned from all International cricket matches across all stadiums in India for at least 5 years. The BCCI should maintain a database of these cricket hooligans and make sure that they are never allowed to enter another cricket stadium in India.

Racial abuse was showered on the West Indies players during their 2002 tour at multiple venues, so let us not pretend that this is just an isolated incident with Andrew Symonds. Indian cricket has a spectator problem.

Acknowledging that there is a problem is the first step toward solving it.



At 9:38 AM, Blogger Raj S said...

While I completely agree that racism has no place in Cricket or any other sports, one thing that occurred to me over the weekend as to why the Indian crowd might have picked on Symonds is the fact that he went over board and criticized the Indian team as well as the whole of India about the way the Indian team was feted and the whole of India celebrated India's victory in the T20 World cup. It is none of his business as to how we celebrate our victories. It did show him in poor light and also probably revealed a little as to how Australians are generally sore losers.

- Raj.


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