The Story So Far is hardly the forum for the kind of sophisticated, involved conversation we can and should have in light of the bizarre proceedings in a London courtroom surrounding allegations of racial abuse leveled at Chelsea defender John Terry. However, we can at least identify some of the more peculiar philosophical underpinnings of a trial that would make most 18th century Enlightenment figures balk, or at least give them fuel for great satire.
From the Guardian:
Terry claims he simply repeated back the slur that [QPR defender Anton] Ferdinand wrongly thought he had used, and denies a racially aggravated public order offence.
This meant that Terry added the word “fucking”, and had also used the word “and” before the racial obscenity, Penny said.
“If it’s rhetorical repetition, why does the word ‘and’ feature at all? Why are any other words spoken by Mr Terry at all, beyond a ‘black cunt’?” Penny asked.
Why indeed? Should the prosecutors have brought in linguistics professors to further elucidate this vulgar quirk of the English language? Or perhaps a tenured boffin well-versed in the philosophy of language? And is it the court’s responsibility too to extricate the tricky issue of intention? Was this first degree racial abuse, or merely in-the-heat-of-the-moment racial abuse manslaughter?
And what of the unintentional irony of this statement from Terry’s solicitor:”This is not a case about racism.”?
He is precisely correct in expression but not in meaning.
Indeed—this is not a case about racism. The outcome of this trial will do nothing to stop further incidents of racial abuse from taking place. Moreover, by making a sharp, legalistic separation between the idea of “racial abuse” and “being racist”, the trial is in fact eroding the concept of personal responsibility in these matters, which must first be acknowledged if real change can be brought about.
To be clear: if you racially abuse someone, you are a racist. If, in the name of legal action, we lose this fundamental sense of meaning, we will never get to the root of the problem, the trials will continue, and so will casual racist abuse.
Terry Dunfield score a VERY late winner for Toronto FC against the Vancity Cappers—WOAH HE DID WHAT? DUNFIELD?!?!
Darren Mattocks scored a pretty goal in the process.
Whitecaps fans say goodbye to Davide Chiumento.
Steve Bottjer on how Canada have to be good and stuff ahead of the 2014 World Cup.
Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson all but calls time on Darren Fletcher’s career because of recurring colitis.
Did Arsenal sign Giroud because they knew Robin van Persie was likely to leave?
Andre Villas-Boas says Roman Abramovic “quit on me.”
Bits and bobs
Messi won an ESPY!
This…was pretty funny.