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Not in the rules Not in the rules
by Juliana Elo
Issue 4
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The competition between Brazil and Argentina on the football field has always been a reason for jokes, but the last episode wasn’t funny. It took place this year on April 14th, during the football game between the teams São Paulo (Brazilian) and Quilmes (Argentinean) in Brazil for the American title. The Argentinean player, Désbato, verbally attacked the black Brazilian player, Grafite, with racist insults. After the game, the police entered the dressing room and took Désbato to jail.

Even though the case was mysteriously solved, with Désbato free after paying bail, even though racism in Brazil does not allow bail, I’m an optimist. I believe the first right step was taken. Aggression committed during games should still be considered as crimes and be solved in court like any other.

League sanctions already has enough trouble stopping players from simple rule breaking, such as grabbing each other’s shirt and using their hand. They can’t be responsible for more than the game rules. Players who have suffered aggression can’t be criticised for claiming justice; there’s nothing to be ashamed of. The most ridiculous aspect of Grafite’s case happened when he later went to play in Argentina, in a game between the national teams. Other Argentinean players told him that this wasn’t a place for him, that he should go to play with dolls.

In Finland, somebody from the crowd witnessed an aggression during an ice hockey game between Lukko and HIFK and reported the crime to the police. The case didn’t go very far once the players and the coaches claimed that violence was part of the game, but that’s not what the book of rules say.

Many players, such as Tie Domi for example, aren’t anything more other than the team fighter. Their designated role is the purpose of “opening the way” so that the team stars can score goals; the way they do it is by blowing the opponents out of the way. Even boxing has rules, if a boxer bites off his opponent’s ear, he should go to jail, like a dangerous animal that can’t walk freely among people.

Violence in sport has gone too far. The biggest part of professional sport practiced nowadays has nothing to do with the one that promoted peace during the Olympic Games in Ancient Greece.

It’s the fans duty to reject this unqualified practice in sports, when they are committed by their teams. A football lover shouldn’t accept anything other than authentic football from his team. There’s nothing to be proud of a cheated victory and we should all remember the big influence sport has as a model for new generations. It’s no use disapproving of children’s life attitude, while we celebrate in front of the TV.

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