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A World-Renowned Brand Struggles With European Racism
By: Emory Brown
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In the ‘60s and ‘70s on America shores, there was a revolution called the Civil Rights movement, where leaders like Malcolm X, Dr. Martin Luther King, John F. Kennedy, and millions of others faced the truth of racism with a fierce spear of social consciousness that helped change the landscape of America forever.
 
Today in the United States, men, women, and children of all races and creeds can enjoy life together as they see fit. Yet racism hasn’t been rooted out of the world completely, especially in the world of soccer on European soil, where fans and teams are still taunting and displaying grand spectacles of disrespect and racial discrimination live for the world to see. 

Today, athletes of color are being harassed at soccer matches throughout Europe. Coaches are using racial slurs. Hate groups are occupying entire sections of stadiums to showcase bigger-than-life signs filled with racial slurs. At one game, one of the signs said, “You may play for the home team. But your real home is the oven,” essentially stating that ethnic players had been overcooked prior to birth.
 
Today, any player of color can walk onto a field and be spit on. Today in 2014! Even after worldwide movements to help establish civility among races have been in play, players of color are being called monkeys. Bananas are being hurled onto the field. Even the league’s top players are being told to hang themselves as fans dress black mannequins in soccer uniforms and hang them from the sides of stadium walls. It’s appalling!

How can a game that is loved by so many inspire such hatred? Especially after seeing movies like Invictus, in which Morgan Freeman plays Nelson Mandela, who used South Africa’s favorite pastime to bring white and black together. And it worked!
 
Well, now we know that the problem is not the game. It’s the brand of hatred that is being taught generation after generation to some of the youth on the other side of the globe. It’s a deeply engrained need to showcase superiority through ignorance. Yet the most disturbing thing about the entire ordeal is the drastic measures that have been taken to curb the enthusiasm of this segment of the fan base, from shutting down entire stadiums to fining players and teams for racial discrimination.
 
Yet it still persists. Racism is one of the world’s toughest brands, it’s older than most of the world’s most renowned brands, and its logo is recognized worldwide. Hopefully one day, with the help of good people and good players, we can at least run it out of the game of European soccer. 


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About the Author
Emory Brown is an award-winning creative director/writer whose mission is to spread the gospel of what great marketers can do when they put their heads together and work together for the greater good and not the bottom line. Working with many esteemed clients, his portfolio of work ranges in genre from conservative to ultra-modern including American Family Insurance, United Airlines, Mazda 6 and RX-8, Illinois Lottery, Tyson, Miller Genuine Draft, Nike Air Force 1, and Mercedes Benz, to name a few.  
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