Fresh off the press, the news is that Dean Jones was fired from his job as a commentator for making racist comments. He referred to South African Muslim batsman Hashim Amla as a “terrorist”.
According to a statement issued by Cricket South Africa on Monday, viewers heard Jones say, “the terrorist has got another wicket” when Amla took the catch that dismissed Kumar Sangakkara.
Amla is a devout Muslim who wears a beard for religious reasons and has successfully negotiated with the South African team’s main sponsors, SA Breweries, not to wear the Castle Lager logo on his playing and practice gear.
Apparently, Jones’ prejudice got better of him and he ‘accidentally’ blurted out his true feelings in spite of claiming that he has plenty of Pakistani cricketers as friends. Also, it was Amla’s beard that seem to have got his goat and thus implored him in making that stupid comment. Every person is entitled to their opinions, however stupid or racist they might be but when they are on a professional assignment, they ought to wear a different cap and keep their sentiments in check. I am glad that Jones was instantly dismissed and by the first sight, he seemed apologetic as well.
This isn’t the first case of racist opinion in sports. The recent and more publicized event was when Materazzi allegedly called Zidane’s mom a terrorist or something like that leading to the French dude’s expulsion in his final career game. Rush Limbaugh was caught making similar racist remarks regarding Philadelphia QB Donovan McNabb. I vaguely remember some English cricketer making a snarky comment – ‘chocolate drops’ – when few West Indian spectators tumbled down a coconut tree in the Caribbean. I am blanking out on his name; if you know please let me know in the comments.
We hear plenty of racist banter among our friends too and sometimes are tempted to snip back but choose to restrain ourselves in fear of jeopardizing our friendships or creating ‘a scene’. But honestly, the quicker such sentiments are nipped in the bud, the better it is for everyone; even the person holding a prejudice. I bet that sometimes they are just aren’t aware of their wrongness of their opinion and after telling them off once, they can eventually come around.