A Black British soccer player ignored the racist abuse yelled at him from a fan but commented on how it was fueled by the racial bias of some media outlets, which is also seen in the United States.
England and Manchester City forward Raheem Sterling said Sunday that irresponsible media outlets to “fuel racism” through their portrayal of young Black soccer players, the Guardian reported.
His remarks appeared on social media after the police launched an investigation into a fan of the opposing team who was recorded on video at Saturday’s match allegedly yelling a racial slur at Sterling. It happened in the first half of a match against Chelsea when Sterling went to pick up the ball in front of the stands.
“…For all the newspapers that don’t understand why people are racists in this day and age, all I have to say is have a second thought about fair publicity and give all players an equal chance,” Sterling wrote on Instagram.
In his media post, Sterling gave the example of a young Black player who was criticized in a newspaper article for “splashing” his salary on a mansion before he even played his first professional match.
Sterling said the rookie buying a house for his mother was the right thing to do, but Sterling also noted that the paper failed to criticize a young white player who did the same thing.
“This young Black kid is looked at in a bad light,” Sterling stated.
A University of Missouri researcher in 2015 reported similar media racial bias in the United States on how athletes are covered. Stories on African-American athletes focus primarily on criminal actions while stories about white athletes are overwhelmingly positive.
Among the findings, more than 66 percent of the crime stories involved Black athletes while only 22 percent involved white athletes. More than 70 percent of domestic violence stories involved Black athletes and only 17 percent involved white athletes.
“True cultural sensitivity requires the eradication of racial and ethnic stereotyping; thus, journalists and reporters must reflect on how their own unfounded beliefs about race differences in sports likely contribute to the stereotyping of black athletes as engaged in more criminal activity and innately physically gifted yet lacking in intelligence and strong work ethics,” the researcher Cynthia Frisby said.
By Sunday morning, the authorities had not arrested the fan.
“We are aware of a video circulating online in which it is claimed racial abuse was allegedly directed at a player … We will review the footage to determine whether any offences have been committed,” a statement from the Metropolitan police said.