Thursday, 19 March 2009

Pardon the racism.

According to KEO:

A Springbok training XV will take on Namibia as preparation for the British & Irish Lions series.

The Boks were also meant to play against the New Zealand Maori as a warm-up, but the match seems to be abandoned due to a President’s Council ruling that doesn’t allow teams selected on racial lines playing against South African sides.

So, apparently it is OK to be racist when playing other countries, but not when playing South Africa. Why I can’t imagine. This is the same South Africa where race is the biggest issue in sport, the same South Africa where, at least once a year, the government sticks their noses where it doesn’t belong and says that there will be quotas for how many of each race will be allowed in a team. Why can’t you play a race based team against a legally racist country?

2 comments:

Stafford said...

Further to the Facebook message I just sent you:

1)I agree the government is interfering and that politics has NO PLACE in sport, but given it's history a policy of having a certain quota of African players is not an unreasonable reaction.

2) By not allowing the Springboks to play the Maori XV South Africa is applying (It's own) law very strictly. (Trying to avoid a double standard) In RSA you can't have race based teams. So it would be a double standard (on the part of South Africa) to allow their team to play the Maoris, a team picked by race.

I guess it depends on your view of what constitutes racism: Old style Apartheid or government imposed quotas.

(which, by the way I agree both have an element of racism, but like I say above the latter is probably a reasonable response given the former).

Interestingly the Maori heritage of most of the Maori XV is tenuous at best and you'd be forgiven for thinking they were mostly Pakiha (New Zealander of European decent).

Otto Silver said...

Oh, but SA does have race based teams and I don’t mind one bit. I am not completely sure if they have played against international teams, but I seem to recall that they did. It is not something you will see very often though.

I am not against the government trying to get more non-white players in, just against the way they do it and then claiming to NOT be racist. Everyone is at least a little racist. Why try to hide it. Interestingly the government does nothing to get more white player in to the often 100% non-white soccer teams.

Anyways, I was just wondering what people with a different background will think of this. My perspective is VERY tainted by my owns background.