The FA cannot stop themselves from charging players with racial abuse. Like a neutron bomb—the theoretical weapon which would devastate populations whilst leaving buildings intact—the causal ethical chain of charges which started with John Terry shouting some sort of abuse at Anton Ferdinand keeps running its course, leaving the actual root causes of racism (and, more importantly, the established football culture) untouched.
And so to avoid any appearances of favouritism, the FA has pushed on with charges against Rio Ferdinand for favourably responding to a Tweet which called Ashley Cole “choc-ice.”
This is all optics and no substance; had the FA failed to act in this case, or, more importantly, had it restricted actions to a reasonable letter and warning to Mr. Ferdinand, the FA would be open to charges of hypocrisy from either interested parties in the press or the partisan idiots who oil the Premier League machine, upset that Terry should be charged after his civil trial but not Ferdinand for seemingly endorsing a racially insensitive Tweet from literally ‘some guy.’
The FA is stuck in an inextricable moral logic of its own creation. Watch your Twitter feed: this may not be over.