QED

PC Girls Enjoy Kicking Balls Hard

Greg Clarke (above), 63, resigned earlier this month as chairman of the English Football Association. More aptly, using the parlance of the game, he was red-carded. A successful businessman, sans university education, he was appointed in 2016, having previously been chairman and director of Leicester City football club and chairman of the Football League. Well ensconced you would think in the upper echelons of the English football world. Unfortunately, he didn’t watch his Ps & Qs; and, in this censorious age, that is terminal.

According to a report in the Telegraph (UK), Clarke made a series of “disastrous comments” before a select committee of parliament, the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport committee. Upright, politically-correct, folks all, I’m sure. The meeting was held via ZOOM, befitting a society bunkered down for fear of sickness and death, which I am reliably informed is new to the United Kingdom. “Ahh! The hell you say. We’re all gonna die one day?”

Clarke stepped in it, so to speak, not once, not twice, but four times. First, I will go to his manful attempt to say the right thing on gays.

“What I would want to do is to know that anybody who runs out onto the pitch and says on Monday, ‘I’m gay and I’m proud of it and I’m happy and it’s a life choice’ – they would have the support of their mates in the changing room.” Ouch! What next, gay bashing!

I hope you are not so unwoke as to miss the homophobia. Certainly, the great and good spotted it. On a similar occasion, even the dim-witted Democrat senator from Hawaii, Mazie Hirono, was alert enough to exhibit high dudgeon when Amy Coney Barrett used the deeply-offensive term ‘sexual preference’; instead, I assume, of sexual orientation. It ain’t a choice or a preference, don’t you know, but an innate proclivity. I have to strike my preference for women out of my lexicon.

Second, he tried (pathetically as it turned out) to say the right thing about racial abuse on social media.

“If I would look at what happens to high-profile female footballers, high profile coloured footballers and the abuse they take on socially media…” Please stop! Racism rearing its ugly head. Clarke apologised for using the expression “coloured footballers” and explained that he sometimes “trips on his words” having been used to saying ‘people of colour’ when he worked in the US.

But is his apology good enough? As it happens, the answer was no. There is all the difference in the world between saying coloured people and people of colour. And if you don’t understand that you are a racist too.

Third, he aired some thoughts about the shortage of supply of good-quality goalkeepers in the women’s game. He ought to have known trouble awaited from the sisterhood.

“I talked to a coach… And she said, young girls when they take up the game, [ages] 6-7-8, just don’t like having balls kicked at them hard.” Whoa! Sexism rearing its ugly head. Jane Purdon, chief executive of Women in Football, tweeted cuttingly in response that she had a high tolerance of footballs being kicked hard at her.

Bully for her. And, clearly, feminists in all occupations, including those not involving balls being kicked at them, have reason to be offended. The very idea that any young girl would be shy of having balls kicked at her hard is beyond comprehension.

To complete his public shame, Clarke once again got himself entangled in that fraught area of racial differences, of which the woke know there are none. South Asians, which I presume refers mostly to Indians and Pakistanis in the UK, apparently don’t take too much to football. Personally, I can’t recall seeing one on the pitch in the Premier League. Now Clarke might have said they prefer cricket and got away with it, maybe, perhaps. Alas, he didn’t.

“If you look at top-level football, the Afro-Caribbean communities are over represented versus the South Asian community … If you go to the IT department at the FA, there’s a lot more South Asians than there are Afro-Carribbeans; they have different career interests. So, what we have to do is treat each individual on their merits, but make sure we are inclusive…” Oh dear! Please stop talking, it’s your only safe strategy. How in the world did he survive for so long?

“Lazy racist stereotypes about South Asians and their supposed career preferences,” shot back Sanjay Bhandari, executive chair at Kick It Out. Incidentally he also found it “staggering” for anyone to say that girls don’t like balls hit hard at them. “It is completely unacceptable,” he added. Sanjay didn’t say whether he had young granddaughters and kicked balls hard at them. We are left to speculate.

What to say? Obviously, in the eyes of the avalanche of critics, Clarke revealed himself to be homophobic, racist, sexist and racist all over again. And he did all of this in relatively few words in one job-ending ZOOM meeting.

Anti-discrimination campaigners were reported as being “outraged.” Alex Davies-Jones MP (Labour) found Clarke’s language “absolutely abhorrent.” Alison McGovern MP (Labour) said she had her “head in my hands.” The FootballvHomophobia campaign described Clarke’s comments as “deeply offensive.” Piara Power, executive director of European football’s anti-discrimination organisation, Fare[i], said “this stuff about coloured players and Asians in the IT department [is] inaccurate and disgusting.”

There it is then. I can’t possibly defend Clarke. Obviously, he transgressed politically correct language and wokeness. The lesson: be careful what you say and how you say it. They are listening; they are unforgiving; and they are waiting to pounce.

[i] Fare, formerly: Football Against Racism in Europe

17 comments
  • March

    FFS! Makes me want to join the proud boys.

  • pgang

    It’s a bit hard to feel sorry for this corporate bloke. What did his generation of senior management do to guide the ship away from these shoals of fools? Nothing, they all jumped on board and pretended they held the moral high ground alongside the wokesters.

  • Doubting Thomas

    And now we see the Australian reporting that the Australian Cricket Test team is going to join with the Indians in a “barefoot” protest in support of that egregious American self-admitted Communist Black Lives Matter movement.

    I despair.

  • Brian Boru

    You can’t say “bugger”; but you can say, “he’s a lovely bugger”.

  • lbloveday

    Ex-POTUS Obama thinks that homosexual life-style is a matter of choice.
    .
    From the book: The Making of Barack Obama by David Garrow.
    .
    Garrow, who received a Pulitzer prize for a biography of Martin Luther King Jr, claims that “Obama wrote somewhat elusively” to a girlfriend “that he had thought about and considered gayness but ultimately decided that a same-sex relationship would be less challenging and demanding than developing one with the opposite sex”.
    .
    Choices – we all make them, Obama chose Michelle in preference to Michael.

  • RB

    SINNER!
    Strike that, RASCIST!

  • DG

    I’ve got to agree with pgang. PC language is so fine-tuned and unforgiving that even its most devoted users could transgress in the blink of an eye. Unlike the once popular Christianity, this new religion does not include forgiveness in its response to error, so you are out!

    Those who didn’t fight from the outset are doomed to be caught.

    A friend of mine who is a conservative moral philosopher once jokingly thought to offer a consulting service to firms that have unpopular products (meat, CO2 for soft drinks, etc.) to help them defend their turf. Maybe he’d have a good business with sporting officials who just don’t know the contours of the current fashions.

  • Peter Marriott

    Well penned piece Peter with just the right amount of humour, irony and hyperbole….to wit, satire.

  • padmmdpat

    It’s getting to the stage that soon no one will be able to be employed because there will be so many restrictions and ‘health and safety’ regulations in place that it will be impossible to do anything. Likewise, it will soon be the case that no one will be able to say anything because ‘anything and everything ‘ will have a nose of wax and can be twisted, interpreted and understood in such a way as to give reason for offence. Especially to those looking for offence. That old hermeneutic of suspicion is well and truly alive today. What’s possible then? What can be done? I think the Western world should go Trappist. Withdraw from society and keep your mouth shut. Entering a monastery is of course a voluntary act, freely undertaken be a mature adult. But in today’s Western nanny state the secular Puritans are whipping us through the doors and clothing us in habits of unpeaceful political correctness and imposing on us a diet of bitterness, leaving us hungry for any real meaning. Latin may be initially incomprehensible to a newcomer into the real Trappists but he soon picks it up – but the ‘latin’ of these woke warrior monks – the language they use, not to sing psalms but to bawl their slogans – will always remain beyond anyone’s grasp because it’s meaning is always changing to suit the changing dogmas of the devotees of these false Idols.

  • IainC

    Sigh. Having read the entire article twice, I still can’t work out what he said that was wrong. I suppose that means I’ll be for the chop at some future date through failure to grasp some completely obvious hidden subliminal ideological meaning.
    I’m rereading Solzhenitsyn’s Gulag at the moment, where millions were crushed to dust for reasons none of them ever understood, convicted by laws none were allowed to read, sentenced by judges who never read the evidence, forced to sign confessions about matters that never occurred. History may not repeat, but it sure does rhyme.

  • Peter Marriott

    IainC
    Good comment. You’ve nailed it beautifully in my view.

  • GH

    I enjoy your articles Peter, but never advise people to be gutless. Never.
    This is a war, and warriors are called-for. These leftist-fascists are just as vulnerable to counter attack as anyone, and given their ‘snowflake’ psychology, more so. The best advice is to pound them hard, undermine their power structures, and treat it like it is: a war in which there can be no reconciliation, and only one side left standing.

  • Alice Thermopolis

    padmmdpat – ” I think the Western world should go Trappist. Withdraw from society and keep your mouth shut.”

    Easier said than done, at least in Thailand:

    “In the Thai population at large, one in three men is obese but the numbers are worse in Thai temples where one in two Buddhist monks is obese. They eat the same food as the Thai population and they only eat in the mornings so what is the problem?

    Sucheera Maguire takes a look at some of the ingenious solutions [smart-belt] that Thai nutritionists have come up with to combat the [male] obesity crisis in Thai temples. (BBC World Service documentary podcast)

    At least they can still practice Nobel Silence.

  • Peter Smith

    Of course GH, there is no advice in my post. The “lesson” is about what can be expected if you speak out of turn. I agree with you that we need to fight back, when and where we can. But that’s easy for me. I no longer have a wife, children to feed, and a job to put at risk. Rod Dreher (The Benedict Option) depressingly suggests that Christians in professional occupations will need to curb their tongues. What’s the answer?

  • padmmdpat

    Alice Thermopolis – Interesting comments about Thai temples. I stayed at the Benedictine Abbey of St Pierre de Solesmes in France a few years back. A community of about 60 monks. Median age around 35. Apart from a few elderly monks they were all trim and taught. There black habits might help – after all a LBN is generally thought to give that slim look – as opposed to bright orange. Perhaps the Buddhist brethren ought to get in a couple of French chefs. Phrasing the request letter might need a language reviewer these days – just to make sure everyone is offended.

  • Alice Thermopolis

    padmmdpat, French chefs, alas, would make no difference. Under Sangha (monk) rules set down by the Buddha, monks can eat only what their followers put into their bowls during the once-a-day alms round. Therein lies the problem, or at least one of them. Thais are working more and cooking less, which means that they are buy more street-food with high levels of fat and sugar to make their Dana offerings.

    As to Peter’s question above: “What’s the answer?” Time will tell, but the language/gender police/warriors certainly seem to be the ascendancy. Minding one’s own mind’s busyness/business in a temple/abbey somewhere becomes more appealing by the day.

  • doublysouthern

    Has it ever been EASY to speak out against evil? Many people who have done so, going back to the Old Testament, have suffered dearly. But the Bible gives solemn warning about not doing what we know we should. For example, “To him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.” (James 4:17)

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