Discrimination in British Football
Huffington Post Sports - over 3 years
Recently, I boarded a late-night bus in Jerusalem. Unbeknown to me, all of my fellow passengers were 'ultras' of a team called Beitar Jerusalem. In short, they epitomised the very worst of Israeli football. As we drove past Arabs walking in the street, they all chanted 'Ben Zoma' (son of a whore) in unison. This is hardly an isolated incident. These are the very fans who firebombed their own stadium when they signed two Muslim players. Yet they are the exception in a largely inclusive Israeli football. Clubs like Hapoel and Maccabi spearhead efforts to promote Arab-Israeli unity. Now players like Biram Kayal and Abbas Suan regularly appear in the Israeli team. And everyone is inspired to do more, ashamed and astonished by the antics of Beitar.
Israel's experience shows the two sides of how sport, and in particular football, can tackle racism. I believe there has been a two pronged-approach, which I would term 'integration by inclusion' and 'integration by reflection'. The first is re
Huffington Post Sports article