Why Can’t Serie A Stop Its Racism Problem?
The title poses an interesting question. And I unfortunately have the sobering answer for you: Serie A is completely clueless on how to not be racist. It’s extremely unfortunate and sad that one of the world’s biggest and most storied soccer leagues can’t seem to catch up with the rest of the world and understand how to deal with racism.
Now, this obviously is more a reflection on Italian culture as a whole and how the country’s racism problem, specifically when it comes to soccer, hasn’t been dealt with (Corriere dello Sport, a top Italian sports tabloid, published the headline “Black Friday” to preview a matchup between two prominent black players). That said, it’s surprisingly awful that Serie A can’t contract people who could teach them to be sensitive about racism.
Case in point, the league released their new “No to Racism” campaign (displayed for you above) to understandably critical reviews. Considering that one of the most common racist incidents in world soccer has involved fans making monkey noises towards black players, releasing an anti-racism campaign with pictures of the Serie A soccer ball color design superimposed on pictures of chimpanzees is NOT a good idea. Despite being a Top 5 league in Europe, along with a rich history, Serie A is running the risk of being permanently unable to shake its reputation as a racist league. This is far from the first time that Serie A has faced a racism problem and it’s unlikely that this will be the last, but they need to start hiring people to teach and promote the kind of sensitivity and anti-racism message that will root out this disgusting behavior, before it’s too late.