December 21st, 2011

Luis Suarez & John Terry: Say What?

Images: Jamie McDonald/Getty Images, caughtoffside.

Luis Suarez has been fined £40,000 and banned for eight matches after being found guilty of misconduct by an FA appointed commission. The charge relates to insulting words of a racist nature made by Suarez to Patrice Evra during Liverpool’s game vs. Manchester United this past October.

Liverpool are said to be ‘furious’ at the severity of the ban, claiming that Patrice Evra’s allegations and the player himself are  ‘not credible’. They are currently considering an appeal. Suarez will be available to play for Liverpool until that decision has been made and any subsequent inquiry concluded.

In other news, it has just been announced that England and Chelsea captain John Terry will face charges for allegedly making racist comments to Anton Ferdinand (left) last October. The Crown Prosecution Service advised that JT should be prosecuted for a ‘racially aggravated public order offence‘ and will appear in court on 1st February. We’ll update you with any further info as we get it.

Initial thoughts, Kickettes? And keep it nice, please. We don’t want to be issuing any suspensions ourselves.

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85 Responses to “Luis Suarez & John Terry: Say What?”

  1. Jay says:

    If anyone is interested and has the time here is the FA's report:
    http://www.thefa.com/TheFA/Disciplinary/NewsAndFe…
    It's quite lengthy obviously the media have picked out one or two key sentences, but from the beginning part I've read it's fairly damning. Evra was accepted not to have said anything about Suarez being South American in a derogatory way, which some people argued was a key factor and should see him being charged. The worst thing he said and which he admitted was insulting Suarez's sister, which Suarez then apparently said he didn't even hear! Will definitely give the whole thing a read, but a few who've had a scan say based on that it's actually quite disgusting Liverpool and Suarez are arguing innocence and trying to paint Evra in the bad light.
    At this point if you can't be bothered to read and it and will blindly go with the player and support of the club, then nothing anyone can say will make you see sense. I just hope that you are never put in such a situation and people think the person who abused you was in the right to do so.
    Liverpool should stop their histrionics and ridiculous support of their player. Suarez should accept the punishment and that his comments are unwelcome anywhere least of all on the football pitch against a rival player.

  2. MercyCFC says:

    In JT I trust,With JT I stand.

    He's not a racist…admit it everyone had made a racist comment at least once in her/his lifetime..Cmmon.He likes Luther Vandross.He can't be racist.

  3. FloraJane says:

    There's plenty of racism in sport and everyone knows it, and it's the right thing to do to try to stamp it out, but the idea that JT is a racist is complete and utter horse sh*t, and anyone who knows anything at all about him- and isn't just a hater looking for something to go on about- knows that. I am so fed up. If I was JT I think I'd do my best to get through this nonsense, then take my money and effing retire. He loves the game and Chelsea and all that, but enough is enough. The man would be much happier, I think, away from all this BS.

    • xoWinnie says:

      no one is saying he is a racist, and i am sure there are plenty of people who would attest otherwise, but like Suarez, what he said was racist and that is the point here. it is wrong regardless of whether you believe what you're saying or not. he shouldn't have said what he said and now he is going to be punished accordingly. there is no one to blame but John himself.

  4. ArsenalFiesta says:

    How sad is it that racsim is still going on! Both deserve serious punishment for their behaviour! It really pisses me off!!!

  5. Zus says:

    I’m from Latinamerica (Guatemala) and I can confirm that what Suarez said to Evra wasn’t a racist comment. I have cousins who are more tanned than the rest of us an we called them negritos as term of endearment. It’s true he lives in and Europe and you might argue he should known better, yet you have no idea how difficult it’s to shake convictions and culture from your home country, when you grown up with it. Now he will know better and I bet he will be political correct from this incident.
    The JT is a whole different story, he should know better. Anton not talking about this, is really classy,cause their will be some (you know their is always someone) arguing he is doing it for his brother. If Rio hadn’t been captain of England NT I bet he will be more vocal about it, and persecute it as Evra did. I honestly believe punishment is needed.

  6. Tough Crowd says:

    Racism still in 2011? sad and pathetic World we live in!

  7. FootyGirl says:

    Until Paul Goulding QC submits his written reasons as to why he banned Luis Suarez, I will continue to follow in the lead of Liverpool and King Kenny in backing Luis Suarez.

    If we are to believe what we're reading then Liverpool feel there are several discrepancies in the way Suarez was judged and I doubt Kenny would be so much behind him if he was truly racist.

    • debs says:

      Why do people keep arguing whether he is a racist or not? The point is not whether he is racist or not, its if he used language to refer to someone's race or colour as to offend that person. There are many people who use racist language against others because they know its hurtful and degrading. They may not hate that whole group of people but they know how to push buttons. There are interracial couples who have been married and when they break up or argue, one uses a racist comment against the other.

  8. McRed says:

    I'm a TEFL teacher and trust me, teaching racially offensive expressions is not exactly top of my priorities when I'm planning lessons for my students! It's perfectly possible that Suarez wouldnt know the n-word is considered offensive after less than a year in the UK. especially if you consider that he could have heard dozens of rap artists using it as if it's positive. If two words in two different languages are very similar but have different meanings or connotations it can very difficult to get a student to remember (or even to accept) that the meaning of the word in the new language is different from the one they're used to.

    • MilaR says:

      the word still means black doesnt it???. He shouldnt have said it in the first place.

      • McRed says:

        They might both mean black but that doesnt mean that the connotations in each country for each word can't be completely different. He's claiming that in Uruguay calling someone negrito because they're black is no different to using any other nicknames that refer to someone's appearance like blondie or shorty. To use another example – in Australia they call anyone from Pakistan a Paki. To them it's just short for Pakistani. Yet in the UK no one (apart from racists) would use the word Paki because it's considered horribly racist. Same word? yes. Same language? yes. Same meaning? not at all.

        That said, i'm not ruling out the possibility that this linguistic mix up is just an excuse he made up to get himself out of trouble. I wish I knew some Uruguayans so they could confirm or deny it!

        • MilaR says:

          hey then he will learn it in the hard way. I think he knew what he was doing, he wanted to wind Evra up and knew that that word would , but he didnt think he would be charged.

    • Sarah, Madrid says:

      You know we girls tend to use the word bitch in term of endauremnt sometime *I know plenty of girls who do, we just use it*, but if I am in middle of a argument with someone and used this word bitch and called her that, wouldn't this consider to be insult? I don't think the other side would think of it to be so enduring
      I am just saying, he could have used another word but this since according to latin amercians, it is not used always as a friendly nickname.
      He is a smart guy and should known better!!

    • DebS says:

      One thing that I learned very early on is that it's one thing for a black to call another black "the n word" but an entirely different thing for someone who's not black to call a black person that. Most likely that has a lot to do with the fact that slave owners called their slaves that and it wasn't a term of endearment. In rap, the use of that word is from one black to another.

  9. Paulita says:

    I hate Luis Suarez he is such an hypocrite and he is always in trouble for something, saying racist stuffs, biting an ear
    so I´m really happy he got what he deserve. I´m from Uruguay, and in my neighbourhood we don´t call "negro" to anyone except to black people. Maybe is not such a violent word as in USA but is not something you would say to a friend or a relative.

    • Natalia says:

      En que barrio vivis?? le decis negro solo a las personas afrodescendientes?? sos de uruguay enserio?? please dude go out someday , talk to people in the street , to real uruguayan people because besides chino ,negro and negrito is the most comon surnames used here IN URUGUAY !

  10. mata says:

    IMO a fine, public apology and "sensitivity" training would have been a more appropriate punishment for Suarez. Basically, the guy said something offensive without understanding that it was offensive. It's so easy for people to say he lives and works in this country and so he needs to abide by our language rules but I find that a somewhat xenophobic viewpoint. The subtleties of a language take a long, long time to master and standards of "political correctness" vary a great deal from country to country. I shudder to think how many people I have unwittingly offended in my travels when trying to communicate in their language but I'm glad most people are patient and give me the benefit of the doubt because I haven't been slapped too many times even though I've made some horrendous gaffes!

    • eternaldreamer says:

      I totally agree, mata! I've had a tough time picking up certain nuances myself when immersed in another culture and I feel terrible when I realize I've made an offensive faux pas! I'm not sure that Suarez feels the same way, but if Evra and Suarez were speaking Spanish, I would not be surprised if he slipped into his homeland mentality. I hope, as was mentioned above, that Suarez truly did not mean it in a racist way and that this has taught him, and others, the impact that these words can have.

      • mata says:

        I hope so too, maybe we're both eternal dreamers! But the fact that Suarez himself is part black does make me think that it wasn't meant in a racist way. And also the fact that so many of his former teammates, managers and coaches, black and white, have defended him. So sad for everyone involved, really.

    • xoWinnie says:

      i'm pretty sure the reason he said it was because he knew it would offend him,
      and then chose to hide behind this "well, in my country…" crock of bull.

  11. Kennedy says:

    Values = Choice = Consequences…enough said

  12. Jay says:

    John Terry is going to be prosecuted for a criminal offence because a member of the public complained to the police about what he said. In the Suarez case this was a matter that went through the FA internally. Evra did not bring his complaint before the police therefore they did not handle the case at all. In terms of the delay with JT's FA case the FA had to suspend its investigation pending the CPS's decision whether to prosecute. This happens in all sports (e.g. Pakistani cricket players and match fixing). Essentially a potential criminal charge is much more important than internal investigations and to avoid prejudice the sports body does not pursue their action until the law has had its say.

    As for the evidential issue in both cases: Terry's words can clearly be seen on the youtube video that was around. This will probably be used as evidence in the case and I don't see how he can deny using the words because it'd pretty difficult to see what else he could possibly have been saying that sounded remotely similar. If he chooses to say he was merely telling Anton he did not use those words it will then come down to witness evidence at which point I would be interested to hear Anton's account considering he has not commented further than to say he had 'strong feelings'.
    Suarez in his case never denied using the word 'negrito' he in fact accepted that he called Evra this in media interviews and in the investigation. The whole case revolved around cultural differences in whether using such a term was acceptable in the UK and did such term cause offence to the person. Obviously Evra was offended he made his opinion known right after the game to the referee, his team and the media. There was no delay or mistake as to how he interpreted those words. Whilst Liverpool chose to get experts to argue that in South America such a word is commonplace and not meant negatively this was not accepted as a reason to negate the fact that in the UK this would be a racist term. Basically he lives and works in this country and should abide by the rules and laws and he's been here long enough and through life experiences should know a lot better than to use that term outside of South America. If you think about it had he said the English version of that phrase no one here/in Europe/ America etc. would be in any doubt that they have racist connotations.
    As for it's Suarez's word against Evra's well Suarez said he said it Evra said he said it= no problem. Clearly Suarez did not mean it in an affectionate way as they're not friends. If he was honest he wanted to antagonise Evra and he succeeded. He might think Man Utd players call Evra that but with the few Spanish speaking South American players and considering who they are (people of good character) I highly doubt they use that word. In the end it was all about interpretation but Suarez should have known better than to even think of using that word to a person he didn't know in the slightest in the middle of a feisty match. To be honest Liverpool's statement essentially wholeheartedly backing Suarez's use of the word and trying to shred Evra's credibility was ridiculous, pompous and disgusting. I assume what Evra admitted to was calling Suarez any one of a number of swear words in Spanish, that happens week in week out on the pitch in English/other languages get over it. What should not happen ever is someone using racist words on or off the pitch.

    Whether Suarez or Terry can be called racists is a different issue altogether. Evra said he did not think Suarez was a racist. That doesn't mean someone who isn't actually a racist can't use racist words. It's the word itself, the intention in using etc that's racist. But your attitude to people of another colour or race might be 'normal' and you have no problem with them ergo you are not a racist just an idiot who uses racist language.

    The FA might be using this case as a landmark, but I don't think it's to improve their image. These two charges were brought before Blatter's brain fart.

    Here ends my essay!

    • Mrs. Q.Borri says:

      WAOOOOO!!!

    • April says:

      Your paragraph regarding the difference between saying a racial slur and being a racist is super important.

      People shouldn't be so quick to brand people based on actions that didn't involve them and regarding people they do not know. I gather some folks will suggest that saying a racial slur implies you are racist, as the act itself is racist… but I cannot help but feel they are two related, but different things. I'd like to read both cases carefully before making any determinations about the character of either player, and branding them for life.

      I do not support racism or the use of racial slurs, but I do believe in "innocent until proven guilty" and will given both players the benefit until I see the reports from both investigations.

    • Kat22 says:

      Great comment!

    • Dylan says:

      Im sorry Jay but you have very poor understanding of the Suarez v Evra episode. Im a cultural anthropologist by profession. Words – especially ones of a racial or ethnic nature mean different things in different countries/cultures. this is because different historical circumstances produce different cultural meanings. That is a fact. One poorly understood by you and the FA.

      Furthermore, Evra spoke to Saurez in Spanish. Suarez responded in Spanish. Not English. Hence he was using a language where the terms have different significances.

      Another point is that Evra used Saurez's ethnicity – his South American origin – in a derogatory way and has been let off. So what you and the FA are both saying is that it is racist if you use a term linked to skin colour but it isnt racist if the term is linked to origin. Umm. how can that be sensible? Its embarrassing how ethnocentric so many commentators are on this matter. You only reveal your own biases and prejudices when you fail to take context and history into consideration.

      I need to stop now before i say something worse than i have. Cheers for your essay opinion.

      • April says:

        If the part about the South American comment is true, I would find this case to be absolvable… it would be entirely hypocritical for them to move forward with charging Suarez and not do the same to Evra.

      • Dallia says:

        point of the matter is until the FA publicly release the final report of the hearing no one, not the public not even liverpool fc, can say for certain who said what, where and why and how the independent panel reached the verdict it did. the only thing we all know for certain is that suarez called evra 'n****' or 'n******' as he admitted as such to a Uruguayan media outlet, as did his compatriot and Brighton manager Poyet and for that he was found guilty of racially insulting another player.

      • DebS says:

        Dylan, while that may be true in some parts of South America, other South Americans have said that it is in fact derogatory where they live.

      • Susana says:

        "South American" is not an ethnicity, it's a nationality. There are many ethnicities in South America so you're generalizing. Evra's remark (if he made it) would be the same as calling someone a dumb American, or an idiotic Frenchman…which are not racist comments.
        Saying that there are cultural differences as an excuse is ridiculous. Suarez has lived in Europe for many years now and knows very well what he said was offensive. To say it isn't in South America is the dumbest defense ever!!!! It's not okay in England where he lives…enough said.

        • April says:

          I've read according to some that have studied the statutes in England that support this entire debate, that nationality, is in fact, included as part of the hateful language. This would mean that in the culture and legal structure in the country he now resides, that he has as much grounds to stand on as Evra.

          Now, none of really know what all went down, but we should probably do well to know the laws the the FA are basing their results on. Their a separate entity, but their grounds for this claim would be very unsubstantiated if they did not have an even handedness in the treatment of national and racial slurs. In essence, they are both derogatory terms based on something that neither has any control over. Just seems to me this case may not be as black and white (no pun intended) as people might make out.

          • April says:

            *none of us
            and
            *They're a separate

            This is what happens when I type after consuming alcohol. My typing becomes impaired, but not so much my thinking… hmm.

        • bri_saldana says:

          everyone keeps making the whole "Suarez has lived in Europe for many years now and knows very well what he said was offensive." or something to that extent. But I believe it is ridiculous to assume this. He had nothing to hide, he could have easily denied everything making it much harder to prove. Am I trying to prove that he's the epitome of virtue? NO…there are no exacts about this scenario. There is an UNDENIABLE confusion on his part, that has a very REAL possibility of being directly linked to a cultural region he was raised in that does not tread on this type of dialog as sensitive. Sorry but these types of discussions are what bridge the gaps in confusion ….."enough said" NONSENSE!

      • Lady_ofSong says:

        Excuses for racism/prejudice really need to stop. People of all cultures, nations should be given a lot more credit for being intelligent and human – if not, there is no hope if the standard for common sense is set so low.

      • Gigi says:

        Where I originally come from, the Philippines (which was a Spanish colony for hundreds of years), the word "negro" is not a racial slur. It's the only word we have to refer to people of very dark skin color, and it's ingrained in our language and culture. We have a tribe of indigenous people who are officially called Negritos. We also have two provinces named Negros Oriental and Negros Occidental. With this background, I understand how someone from a Latin country would find nothing wrong with calling a man of African origin a "negro."

        However, the part that I think needs to be examined is not so much Suarez's understanding and cultural context for the word, but his intention and tone in using it. So to him it's nothing, but I don't think Suarez is ignorant of other cultures, so I suspect that he knows it would offend someone like Evra and used it specifically to provoke him. Common as the word "negro" is to him and to me, I don't really see how it would be used on the pitch in any other context except in an effort to offend.

        • Sarah, Madrid says:

          This comment, exactly!!!!! The context here, everything goes back to context and how was it's said!! I don't know, but As much as some thinks That Evra is using the race card, Suarez is using the cultural difference card too!! Sorry, if some will defend him based on that, then sorry I just don't buy it, it maybe be a friendly term when you are chilling out with your fiends, but in the middle of a completive environment, I just don't see it, in a football game where thrashing happens all the time!!
          *that if he actually said it, that's if there is an evidence to back it up*

        • Marina_Isabella says:

          Thank you, gracias Gigi! I was reading through all this mess and the only thing I can come up with (beyond the Suarez/Evra controversy) is that people in the Anglo culture simply don't understand the meaning, the essential, fundamental meaning of this word in Spanish. It just means black (no more no less) — no taboo behind the word, no stigma… it's just the name of the color. Some people will use it in a derogatory manner, definitely yes! but the word itself isn't derogatory to us Latin Americans and I'd dare say Spanish-speakers in general — is the way the word is used or thrown around. Which in the Anglo culture is a big deal to use that word, yet for some reason even though it is highly offensive, you hear people throw it around like it's nothing among them. Oh… the hypocrisy!

      • Joanna says:

        totally agree

    • FiGGy says:

      great comment, I was still unsure about why Terry's case was handled differently so thanks for clearing that up.
      And I found Liverpool's statement dis-heartening in the sense that it seemed they were trying to shift blame onto Evra, trying to get action put onto him..
      But we'll see if they choose to appeal or not.
      Again nicely said :)

    • kitty says:

      What a great read your essay was, the most sensible of all comments so far.
      Racism has no place in sport.
      Suarez has admitted using the word, whether he thinks its offensive is not the issue, its who it is directed at.
      As for the comments regarding Suarez being used as an example by the FA, of course he is an example. There has never been a similar charge made against a player before.

      Is the ban too long, no! Players need to realise that these comments are not acceptable regardless of whether they are said in the heat of the moment or not. If Rooney gets a 3 game ban for swearing into a camera then the ban for racist comments should logically be longer. Bottom line is that if you or I had made these comments in our place of work we would be suspended pending an investigation, if not fired. People don't deserve special treatment because of what they do.

      • Jay says:

        I am glad to be able to clear up the frustration as to why JT was facing criminal charges and no FA one's at present whereas Suarez was dealt with exclusively by the FA.
        There's been some mention of what statute lays down as the offence of using racist language. Whilst that will be relevant to JT's case it is not really to Suarez's. Suarez faced an FA charge and was found to contravene rules/ 'laws' laid down by the FA.
        It is therefore those 'laws' that should be examined. The charge was for, “abusive and/or insulting words and/or behaviour contrary to FA rules", including "a reference to the ethnic origin and/or colour and/or race of Patrice Evra." Now does the FA define ethnic origin in this instance isn't it largely relevant when the term he used was by its very meaning a reference to his colour. Whilst I would like to look at the FA’s rules in depth I don’t have the time or inclination at present so I am relying on the media’s accuracy in laying out the charges and feel secure that having put it within quotation marks the rules do read this way.

        • Jay says:

          Sorry wrong reply button!

          Like the points you made regarding the ban though. Very sensible and true.

    • Jay says:

      Well thanks for the many replies my comment generated. Apologies it was so lengthy lol but if I say I'm on my way to becoming a lawyer perhaps it'll be more understandable! Just to explain (and certainly NOT brag as I’m aware that’s how this could come across) I've approached the situation with my law degrees and further law studies as well as my fairly fluent knowledge of castellano/ Castilian Spanish amongst other languages and the fact my own background is from a very ethnically diverse island. I'll split my response up into parts that relate so people can read the bits they want. Or you can just not read it that’s fine too!

      To be honest how can people believe Suarez is innocent at the outset in any controversy that sprouts up (unless you’re a diehard Uruguay, Liverpool and Suarez fan)? Having seen him cheat blatantly at the world cup most disgracefully against Ghana (sure national hero for some, which I can't quite believe, if an England player did it I'd be screaming at the tv for the red card), his diving all over English pitches up and down the land since his arrival in the Premier League, this incident with Evra followed not to long after with the obscene hand gesture at Fulham fans, he’s clearly no angel. In fact I’d be surprised if Santa had him on his nice list at all since his football career at least. That last one was the stupidest act he could've done so soon after being charged by the FA for the Evra thing and sorry if you can't handle being heckled and antagonised then don't do it to other people and be surprised when they don't take it all well and are offended.

      I agree with those who like the distinction between a racist and someone who had the poor judgment to use racist words but is not a racist. John Galliano found himself convicted due to France’s laws which take a very dim view on anti-Semitic behaviour in particular because of history. A lot of people, who knew him personally, including some of whom are Jewish, said he was not a racist. However they accepted he was drunk and acted very stupidly. I think to be a racist it would have to be ingrained in your very nature to have an irrational dislike of a race and your behaviour would manifest itself consistently in this manner. That’s not always the case with people who make the mistake of using a racist word. I certainly don’t think Alan Hansen is a racist but he was made to apologise for using the word ‘coloured’. He made an error, probably just because his generation was brought up to think that word was ok and better than saying ‘black’, but he made his apology and all is well.

      In any case may I wish you all a very Merry Christmas!

      • Jay says:

        Yes so I mean to put that reply to Kitty was meant to come here so I'll direct you there if you are so interested.

        Next I meant to say:

        Dylan I appreciate your professional opinion. I do however understand words have different meanings in different countries. There are words I can say in France I would never use in other French speaking countries vice versa. My South American Spanish teachers have always pointed out if words have different meanings in Spain than in their own country. Often the difference can range from insulting someone or saying something very funny, either way it's not ideal and of course has been the result of how languages evolve in different places.
        Evra is a diplomat's son (however the gift of diplomacy appears to have passed by him if you see the way he has wound up the Arsenal players in particular) he's not an idiot and his background has meant he's learnt a lot of other languages. It is more than likely Evra spoke in Castilian Spanish and Suarez of course in Spanish spoken by Uruguayans. On the surface the same language in practice there can be difficulties that arise from different meanings. Perhaps Evra knew that the word could be used inoffensively. However girls sometimes call each other bitches as a joke if I called any one of you a bitch over the internet/in real life having no idea of who you are then wouldn't you be offended even if I meant it in the nicest way possible. It's hard to use a good example without sounding rude but if I may attempt another one more contentious one. Amongst themselves boys joke and they can call each other anything even Paki or Chink (I've seen it). In the UK use those words to a stranger and it will kick off. The point is sometimes we can use offensive language between friends but in that context the words become friendly insults. Between people who do not share that relationship the word will carry its full meaning and the intent to cause offence whether inadvertently or intentionally on the speaker’s behalf. If you then realise you’ve offended someone and you didn’t mean to then you apologise for your ignorance. Ignorance is not a defence to a criminal offence I fail to see why it should be to an internal charge.
        It's interesting the point Liverpool brought up to turn the situation into making Evra the bad guy by saying he abused Suarez. I cannot comment on what Evra said since it appears Liverpool only pulled this fact out of the air now. I'm interested to know what they allege he said. No reference has been made to these apparently objectionable terms prior to this point. If it truly was so terrible I would expect them to have argued it before the FA and therefore to figure in the report. Clearly neither the FA nor I am not saying it is racist if you use a term linked to skin colour but it isn't racist if the term is linked to origin because the charge Suarez faced initially makes specific reference to ethnic origin.

        In any case it doesn't make it right for Suarez to use racist language if Evra allegedly used racist language. How is that sensible or a way to absolve one person from their bad behaviour? Oh it's ok he stabbed him because the other guy stabbed him first. Oh if he stole from me I'm entitled to steal from him. NO! That's not aimed at people here in particular but to those who appear to be making this kind of argument. Just don't.

      • Jay says:

        I hate the argument but X can’t be a racist he has black friends. No way can Y have said that because their relative is Asian. Oh sorry I forgot we can’t discriminate against a race/ethnicity because we associate with a small select group of people from that background or are related to them. This argument is pure crap. I know families where one person marries someone of a completely different race and the rest of the family is aghast even disown that person. If they ‘accept’ that person it hasn’t stopped someone commenting behind their back in less than flattering terms. It’s not unheard of that some kids with mixed backgrounds where the grandparents are let’s say behind the times use racist words in reference to their parent who is of an ethnic minority. It might be they don’t mean any harm by saying that but they certainly shouldn’t be using those words in this day and age.
        Does anyone remember Jade Goody and the whole Celebrity Big Brother racism scandal. Her family argued no she’s not a racist/ she didn’t mean anything racist by the way she insulted Shilpa Shetty because she came from a mixed race family. Well that doesn’t mean a thing at all. What she said and did was racist. Despite her background she made derogatory and racist comments based on the fact Shetty was Indian. Even if you believe the excuses that it wasn’t racial and not to offend any Indian out there well it did. The apologies were the least Channel 4 and she could do.
        Just because Suarez has teammates, friends and a family member who are black, Asian, Christian, Jewish, Muslim etc. that doesn’t mean he is incapable of saying a racist word. It doesn’t protect him from such accusations in and of itself.

      • Jay says:

        The other argument that really annoys me is ‘but he’s from abroad and it doesn’t matter he lives in the UK now he shouldn’t be expected to know what is acceptable or what is not.’ This is back to ignorance is not a defence. If I may use an example here: in the UK theft is an offence punishable by fine and/or imprisonment. In some Middle Eastern countries theft is punishable by having your hand chopped off. I don’t live there or have any in depth knowledge of such a country but should I visit there I would be aware of this as well as major cultural differences. To show respect and not cause offence I would not dress in a provocative style and if I stole I would expect the laws of the country to apply to me. Even if there was some law I did not know I broke I couldn’t say but I’m foreign you shouldn’t punish me like that you should just accept it’s ok to do that in my country.

        When I lived in France the ban on the Muslim full face veil (niqab) came into force. Now that in itself has caused a lot of controversy but the overall thinking is that people should abide by the laws of the country they choose to live in. If I were a Muslim therefore I would respect the law and not wear the niqab. If I chose to disobey the law I would be prosecuted. Doesn’t matter if I come from a country where the law tells me to wear a niqab that’s not a defence. Would I be so completely unaware of the fact this has become a law, with the global media coverage that would be unlikely, but not implausible. Is that a defence not knowing about this law? No, tough luck!

        Continuing with France as it is a place I know very well they are a secular country. You may not wear religious symbols in public buildings. If you do so unknowingly you will most likely be asked to take them off and told the reason why. At this point you may do so and that’s fine, no harm was intended no harm was done as you corrected yourself as soon as possible. If you say no I’m not going to do that because ‘it’s my right to do as I like’ then there’s a problem. You are now completely aware your behaviour is wrong (according to the place you are in) and you refuse to comply with the rules. Therefore you should accept that this will have negative consequences for you. You can then bring your complaint before the relevant authorities.

        Suarez was surely made aware his behaviour was wrong. ’ Evra may have said some form of ‘don’t say that to me I don’t like that word’ or indicated it otherwise. To continue saying the word past the point you know it’s offending someone else means you are culpable. He can’t keep saying it then turn around and say well if we were in Uruguay this would be ok. We’re not in Uruguay unfortunately for him we’re in the UK. Don’t tell me he’s not aware of the racial tensions this existed (possibly to a lesser extent still do) in this country. It’s like going to America or South Africa and saying that word and being like ‘oh my goodness there used to be racial segregation?!?

        He chose to break the FA’s rules and was charged and found guilty. If he didn’t know it was bad not only because Evra said so but because it’s actually against the rules, tough luck! He should then accept the punishment and not try to substitute the consequences he would get if he was elsewhere as it took place under the FA’s jurisdiction. If he wants to then bring his complaint that his right to freedom of expression as under the European Convention of Human Rights/ Human Rights Act was contravened he is very welcome to. Good luck arguing though that you can use that word when Article 10 also restricts this right for protection of the rights of others and morals.

    • Jose says:

      Good job!

  13. Sabrina says:

    The FA is making a joke out of themselves here. Eight matches banned just based on the allegations made by Evra, without any further proof or witnesses and even thogh Luis is denying everything. Maybe we can "rooney" the ban to a few games less? The FA should really start to reconsider their path right here or noone will take them seriously anymore in the near future.

    • Lily says:

      Actually I believe Suarez admitted he does use the word "negro" apparently in Uruguay is a normal word or something like that. Can someone confirm this?

      • Lucy says:

        I´m latinamerican and the word "negro" is labeled for black people, some people call "negritos" to dark skinned persons but not as a racism remark, it´s not the same meanning as when people in USA or Europe use the word "nigger"

        • katie says:

          But it's still a comment based on his race and after playing in Europe for four years he should know it's not acceptable.

      • Maria says:

        It's not a big an insult as the n-word in English. If you use it in a demeaning manner, then yes it is. But in South America is mostly a term of endearment.
        What I felt happened was that Suarez used it as a mocking term especially after Evra told him "Don't touch me, you South American" and Suarez replied "Why not, negrito?"
        It's the fact that he used the race card that is the case. If he had said "Why not, Frenchie?" then we wouldn't have a problem today :P

        • April says:

          I am confused… if Evra said that to him, isn't he guilty of the same thing as Suarez? In England, from what I am told, the law not only applies to racial slurs, but also slurs of any ethnic nature. South American is precisely that.

          • Susana says:

            South American is not an ethnicity…it's a nationality.

            • Kristina says:

              Exactly.

            • April says:

              It's not a nationality.. it is a continent. Someone doesn't come from the proud country of South America… in fact there are a variety of nationalities and backgrounds within South America, and of varying languages and ethnicities. But if you want to argue nationality, the law in England supposedly includes nationality (or place of citizenship) in it's definition for discriminatory language.

              Point is, if Suarez can be labeled as using the color of one's skin as a derogatory term, than so can Evra of using someone's place of origin. They are both things that someone hasn't control over, and being used in a negative fashion so as to provoke the other (if the allegations and stories about this whole situation are true). I am a neutral as far as both players are concerned, but I'd like to keep an even keel when thinking about the situation and not let my bias of either player affect how I feel about this. Fair is fair, and we'll know and understand more when the reports are made public.

      • mata says:

        When the referee called over Suarez and Evra during the game and asked them to chill out a bit, Suarez apologized, patted Evra and said "sorry negrito" or words to that effect. He has never denied it. He says that the word is used all the time in Uruguay to anyone whose skin is dark (including Suarez himself) and has no racist connotation. I do not know if this is true, but the fact that Suarez himself is part black (his grandfather is black) would tend to confirm it.

        Evra, on the other hand, has form. He has made allegations of racism before that were found to be completely unfounded, and during that now infamous Liverpool ManU game he even accused the referee of being racist when he booked him, saying to him "you only gave me a yellow card because I am black".

        • April says:

          He actually did not make the allegations. Both times, it was others that complained of racial slurs being directed at Evra, but he did not make allegations or file complaints from what I gather. This should really be made clear.

    • Miss XOXO says:

      Rooney is the golden man for FA…That why he always safe:-(

    • Susana says:

      Suarez admitted to saying it so Evra's account is not needed. By your account, if a woman says a man touched her inappropriately we automatically shouldn't believe here because there is no "evidence" and nobody else heard it.
      The law disagrees with your take.

  14. Gigi says:

    I think the FA are trying to make an example out of Suarez. It's quite possible that they will eventually cut down his ban to lesser weeks after the appeal, but at least [they hope] they will have cleaned up their own image somewhat and a measure of fear will have been instilled in other players prone to similar transgressions (lip reading is always interesting at EPL games, don't you think?).

    I understand the proclivity for gamesmanship in highly competitive environments, but racism should have no place in sport. The Premier League has become the most successful league in the world precisely because of the presence of such diverse foreign talent.

  15. Miss XOXO says:

    IMO Luis Suarez and JT (even though im a Chelsea die hard fans) deserve the punishment if they really guilty to be racist…

  16. sıla says:

    I hate racists

  17. rossanera says:

    I echo what Sarah said. Why is Suarez only liable to the FA for his actions while Terry's being prosecuted by the Crown? Either way, I suppose it's good to see strong action being taken; it does convey the message that racism in the game is no longer acceptable.

    • April says:

      It has to do with the public complaint. If Evra brought it to the police, or if there was video footage and someone saw it and was offended, he could also be subject to investigation. Terry's incident was made public through video, and while Anton didn't make an official complaint, a random observer of the video footage did (even though there is no sound, it is presumed through lip reading that he is saying the alleged words… mostly because he confirmed he repeated the allegation). It's interesting for me, as that offense would never be brought to court where I live, and it is actually a protected right to say something stupid… public humiliation is the court of law for that, here in the US.

  18. Sarah, Madrid says:

    So, I just want know why is Evra case handled by FA and Terry's by police?

    Wow!! I thought man word against another don't hold in such cases!!!! Racism especially in a game where suppose to bring people from different background together just leave me speechless,

    • Raincitygirl says:

      The Suarez/Evra case was handled by the FA because Evra brought a complaint to the FA, not to the police. The Terry/Ferdinand case is being handled by the police because a third party lodged a complaint with the police, they investigated, and decided to charge Terry. The FA had started to investigate the Terry/Ferdinand case but when they were notified the police were also investigating, they suspended their investigation. They said they would continue their investigation after the criminal charge is resolved.

      In the Suarez/Evra case, either no third party went to the police, or they did and the police didn't think there was enough evidence to warrant a charge. I don't know. But that's why Suarez/Evra is being handled by the FA and Terry/ Ferdinand isn't.

  19. The Czarinadi says:

    What the hel is hoing on with the JT saga. Why can't they wrap it as fast so that we know justice is being done. Justice delayed is justice denied. Is because he is English and captain of England. Double standards by the FA. Was Suarez's investigated by the CPS, I wonder? Actually JT's racial slurs are so clear on TV you dont need CPS to investigate. Lol

    • April says:

      Suarez was not investigated by CPS, as only Evra heard and made the complaint, and did not do so with the police. In JT's case, someone in the public saw the video that was suggested to be from the moment the incident took place and they made an official complaint to the police that they felt it was racially abusive and they were offended. The CPS has decided there is enough evidence to move forward with a case.

      The timing is actually not in favor of JT… dragging it out does him no benefit. That is also just how the law works… things take forever in most countries to see trial.

  20. liz says:

    Racism doesn't belong anywhere near the game. I think 'ballers forget that children grow up wanting to be just like them, and they are setting an awful example. And if you are found guilty of racist remarks, man up and deal with the consequences.

    • Lucy says:

      I don´t think footballers, rockstars or actors should be helded as "role models" specially not John "I like to sleep with my teammates´s wifes" Terry, parents should be aware about what their childrens look at role models

      • April says:

        Agreed… while they live in the public eye and should be wary of their actions and how they can be seen and looked up to, giving them the responsibility of influencing one's children accounts more for poor parenting than it does for whatever the famous person's poor behavior is.

      • Raincitygirl says:

        To be fair, the "wife" in question got retractions and large settlements from News of the World and the Daily Mail for defaming her. Not saying Terry *definitely* didn't have an affair with Vanessa Perroncel, but the tabloids couldn't prove it, and had to shell out major moolah because of it.

        Regardless of Terry's adultery status or not, this thing with Ferdinand is a *significantly* more serious type of incident. You don't get charged by the police for possibly having cheated on your wife with a teammate's ex-girlfriend.

        And of course footballers, rockstars and actors shouldn't be seen as role models, but many children and teenagers see them as role models all the same. I'm sure parents would love it if their kids would idolize Nobel Peace Prize winners, but the fact is a lot of kids and young people look up to footballers, regardless of whether they should. Which they probably shouldn't, because having a talent for kicking a ball around does not necessarily make you someone whose behaviour should be emulated. Obviously.

        • AC_USA says:

          There should be no room for racism on the pitch, Neither should there be footballers cheating left and right because to me that sets a bad example too. And the wives they pick can only pile on make up, wear a skirt barely long enough to cover their butts(in most cases), put on heels in which you are more likely to break a leg then walk and go get wasted. The whole darn thing is going in completley wrong direction. Soccer is money. Its not the love of the game like they say it is. No one really cares to set an example any more (for the most part at least) and all they see is money. Its sad but its the reality of it. And if we want things to get better we need to make players pay up. Eventually they just might come to their senses and there is no other way to do it. :)

  21. Lydia says:

    It's obvious the FA are using the Suarez outcome to improve their own image. After the reaction in the UK to Blatter's comments last month, they obviously had to come down hard on him to prove their own worth.

    If there's any real evidence that we don't know about which outright proves Suarez is guilty then fine, release that and be done with it, but until they do that, it's still one man's word against anothers imo.

    • katie says:

      But it isn't one man's word against anothers. Suarez admitted to what he said. He is claiming cultural differences in what the word means.

      • Anonymous says:

        Suarez admitted to saying a "word". He never admitted to the media what he exactly said and seeing as the FA are the only ones who know Suarez's testimony at the moment, what he admitted to saying is purely speculation at this point

    • FootyGirl says:

      I agree with you. The FA appears to be using the Suarez case to make a statement to FIFA and Sepp Blatter in particular about how hard they come down on racism.