Miami Dolphins defensive end Robert Quinn raises his right fist during the US national anthem, before a pre-season game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Aug. 9 | Wilfredo Lee / AP
Despite threats by U.S. president, players persist in taking a stand in favour of social justice. The protests objectively target the state and its character as a racist state with impunity to kill and to disregard the rule of law, at home and abroad. This is a just and significant stand by all the athletes and the millions of Americans and people around the world who have joined in expressing support for them. Continue reading
By TONY SEED
What about the neo-colonial mentality and behaviour of the monopoly sports media? Every foreign star who touches down in Canada is celebrated as some singular being, and Canadians are supposed to be blessed and thankful for the favour of paying to watch them perform.
Throughout the past week, the sports media has been hyping non-stop the first start of American football quarterback Johnny Manziel in the Canadian Football League. A former NFL first round draft pick, his two seasons with the Cleveland Browns were marred by off-field troubles including spousal abuse. He has not played since the end of the 2015 season. Continue reading
• ‘I am German when we win, an immigrant when we lose’
Mesut Özil was part of the Germany team that was eliminated from the World Cup at the group stage in Russia
Reuters (July 22) – Mesut Özil has announced his retirement from international football with immediate effect, the midfielder hitting out at what he perceived to be unfair discrimination surrounding his meeting with the Turkish president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan
, in May.
The Player’s Tribune has published a series of first person life stories of footballers competing in the 2018 World Cup in Russia. One of the more compelling is that of ROMELU LUKAKU, the outstanding Belgian striker. Something he says struck a chord, reminiscent of the Canadian media’s attitude towards world class sprinter Ben Johnson in the 1980s. When things were going well for him, we read articles calling him Ben Johnson, the Canadian champion. After he had been incriminated with steroids, they called him Ben Johnson, the immigrant from Jamaica.
Sam Robles | The Players’ Tribune
Response of President of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), Craig Reedie (pictured above) to International Olympic Committee chief Thomas Bach’s demand for a sweeping overhaul of the World Anti-Doping Agency: “I would like to think not all the system is broken, that part of the system is broken, and we should start to identify those parts that need full attention.” | FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP/Getty Images
For just over two years, orchestrated revelations and allegations of Russian doping have been grabbing the headlines. An international media campaign is in full swing, attempting to question the participation of Russian athletes in international competitions such as the current 2018 Winter Olympics. Canadian individuals such as Dick Pound, a longtime IOC executive, and law professor Richard McLaren, agencies such as the Canadian Olympic Committee and the CBC and sports media are playing a prominent role in the US-inspired offensive which aims to isolate Russia, dehumanize its athletes and monopolize international sport. The claiming of a moral and ethical high ground is self-righteous indeed, coming from a country where “tanking” by its professional hockey and basketball teams – the deliberate losing of games in order to claim a high draft position – is presented as a norm. For the information of readers, we are printing a 2017 commentary by US sports attorney and scholar RON KATZ* in Forbes that disputes the evidence produced by the learned professor and the process.
* * *
The Russian Sports Minister recently claimed that the so-called McLaren report, which provided the basis for the banning of Russian athletes from the Olympics and Paralympics, would not stand up to legal criticism. Using as an example the U.S. legal system, in which I have worked for 45 years, I agree. The McLaren report, formally called The Independent Person Report (IPR), lacks the basic due process required in the U.S. Court system. Continue reading
“Essentially, the CAS ruled in 2011 that the US athlete could not be punished twice for the same thing, once as a sanction and the second time purportedly as an eligibility decision” | US sports attorney and scholar RONALD KATZ*