Sports Law Blog
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Thursday, April 10, 2008
Newly Posted Paper on Racist Sports Fans

Dr. Lawrence McNamara, a Professor at England's University of Reading School of Law, has posted Sport, Spectator and Traditions of Hatred: Responding to Racist Abuse on SSRN (the article was published in 2001 in the Griffith Law Review). Here's an abstract:
This article is primarily concerned with racist abuse by spectators that is targeted at indigenous Australian footballers. My core objective is to explore some possible options for combating and eliminating racist abuse at sporting events, keeping in mind the relationships between such aims in football and racism within the community more generally. It is argued that the positive anti-racism strategies and images that have underscored the Australian Football League's (AFL) approach to on-field racist abuse need to be subjected to careful scrutiny. It is clear that currently there is simply not enough information about racist abuse by spectators at either elite or lower levels of football (or any sports) and there is no meaningful avenue of redress for players who are subjected to it. Importantly, if the community is serious about combating the traditions of racism that have characterised Australian sport, there are significant questions that need to be asked about participants' experiences of racism and racist abuse in sports and in competitions which are not conducted at the elite or professional levels.
For (Howard's) previous Sport Law Blogging on the issue, see:
Welcome Back: Mutombo, Richards, and Racist Cheering Speech

Hate Speech as Cheering Speech


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