Should Arsenal continue to take the knee before games? Is it pointless?

Would You Take The Knee Anymore? By Dan Smith

Okay he played for Spurs, but It’s hard not to respect Les Ferdinand for speaking out on QPR’s behalf concerning why they will no longer be taking part in taking a knee before kick offs, saying the message had ‘become diluted’.

The Director Of Football was responding to why his club, and their opponents on Friday, chose to not take part in a ritual that has become commonplace since the death of George Floyd.

Ferdinand told CNN: “No one is more passionate than me about this topic. I have spoken on the matter throughout my footballing life,”

“I work for one of the most diverse football clubs in this country. A lot of people are being fooled out there.

“Recently, I took the decision not to do any more interviews on racism in football because the debate was going around in circles. People want a nice soundbite when something happens, but how many of the media who have criticized QPR over the past 48 hours genuinely want change?”

“What are our plans with this?” he added. “Will people be happy for players to take the knee for the next 10 years but see no actual progress made?

“Taking the knee will not bring about change in the game — actions will.”

Whatever your opinion you have to admire Sir Les for speaking out when others might have been scared to say the same things even if they agree.

It’s often easier to stay in the majority. Common sense would say not every single footballer in English Football will agree taking part in what some have viewed as a political statement, yet feel they have to respect the status quo. Imagine if you had been the one footballer who was standing when everyone is kneeling. That would leave you open to scrutiny.

Yet those at Loftus Road are trying to educate that there are reasons why taking the knee makes some not comfortable.

The Premiership themselves had to release a bizarre statement last season when there was a backlash towards the Black Lives matter ethos, and here was one of the Uk’s biggest brands giving free advertising. The statement strangely tried to enforce that they were supporting certain principles of the group but not others, such as taking away funding off the police.

In other words the League were unaware the movement had existed for years and that they only heard of them due to events in America.

That kind of backs up what Les Ferdinand was saying this week. After all, most billionaire organisations have marketing experts who would research and understand what they are endorsing.

The former striker went on to tell a story about how last August the R’s under 18 had a fixture abandoned due to racial abuse in Spain. Over a year later UEFA still haven’t handed out any kind of punishment. If, like me, that’s the first you heard of that incident, that’s kind of the point being made. The media will report protests against racism but failed to mention abuse taking place.

That’s the same governing body who when Bulgarian fans were clearly making monkey noises and Nazi salutes, their national team were fined 65,000. That’s less than Bendtner had to pay for having advertisers on his underwear.

Yet watch a Champions League or Europa League tie and tackling racism is all over the branding, commentators are asked to quote their motto and two squads now have a photo together to promote equality.

So Ferdinand is kind of correct then, the pre-match routine has become nothing more than ‘good PR’.
Let’s be honest, it’s good for the Premiership’s, Sky Sports’, Arsenal’s, etc, image that they are seen supporting a sensitive subject at the moment.

Yet if people around the world need to watch their favourite footballer take a knee to remind them to treat all people with respect and kindness, then that’s scary.

Sometimes it’s not what you do but what you don’t do. While everyone’s heart was in the right place, taking the knee since June hasn’t actually changed any laws in the sport or prompted heavier sanctions.

The French Football Federation’s response to Neymar’s allegations that he was abused, was to claim ‘there is no racism in that League’, so why are your clubs taking a knee then?

People such as I are more likely to talk about a Championship club not taking the knee compared to all clubs doing so. That to me is how you create change … with debate and conversation’.

Anyone who’s listened to Mr Ferdinand over the years knows he’s passionate about this subject, and I much prefer someone making a noise to at least try and force change compared to everyone for the next 10 years ‘protesting’ even though zero progress is being made.

It’s actually offensive to those affected by the issue and men/women who battle every day to inflict changes to see companies suddenly choose to join in with their ethos yet turn the other cheek when chances are there to show zero tolerance.

I have written before, the 20 Prem owners meet every summer to discuss any change of rules. Nothing is stopping them from all signing a document agreeing that any racial abuse from their players is punished with a season ban, or anti-social behaviour from a crowd means points deductions.

That would be teaching youngsters how serious that crime is. If your initial reaction is ‘Ifs or buts’ then that’s not zero tolerance.

It’s not just Football…

Part of the Arsenal Family, Alex Scott has shared the extent of how much she gets trolled for being employed as a pundit, some feeling it’s purely based on her gender and race as some sort of TV companies ticking a Diversity box. Just think about that. In 2020 some viewers feel they need an explanation why diversity is on their TV screen.

Yet the likes of Facebook and Twitter (and have for years) refused to put an action plan in place where it would be easy to identify these cowards.

Arsenal were forced to point out they have zero relationship with AFTV after the YouTube channel used two racial slurs in the North London Derby. It took sponsors to have to spell out the seriousness of what had been said. To this day some suggest the man kicked off the channel was ‘thrown under the bus’. Yes, because he was forced to make a racial stereotype live to thousands of people?
If you went to work and said what he did and got sacked, have you been ‘thrown under the bus’?

The fact is though that’s how some feel. That tells me they are not benefitting from anyone taking a knee.

What’s the point of social media blacking out accounts in solidarity, but not doing anything to be a deterrent to racial abuse?

In the Champions League Final UEFA couldn’t wait to have Neymar take a photo under their banner of ‘let’s tackle racism’ to show their advertisers, yet where’s the players support when he asks for help?

Why is Harry Kane taking a knee, yet not leading England off the pitch when it’s clear his teammates are being abused?

So Les Ferdinand is correct to claim only actions will change the future. English players could take the knee for the next decade, wear as many shirts and wristbands as you want. None will have the same power of them refusing to carry on playing in a qualifier due to racism.

Naturally, other clubs will feel more comfortable to follow QPR and Coventry’s lead.

I don’t know how gooners would feel if Arsenal’s squad made that decision, but I would support them.

Not because I don’t want to fight the cause but taking the knee has become pointless, there’s no substance, an empty gesture. It’s saying Football is united and won’t stand against racism, yet in reality nothing happens when racism occurs.

Be Kind In The Comments…

Dan Smith


  1. @DAN,
    You don’t need anybody to be kind in their comments, you just expressed your mind over an issue that has eaten up almost the intrigal part of the society without us taken serious clamp down on it. What is the essence of taken a kneel when a player is abused the next comment from thier respective FA is that there is no rasicm in there league. Neymar was a good example after taken a knee and taken pictures under UEFA banner against rasicm got abused and nobody is trying to investigate the situation, what message is been sent out towards the cause of Blacklife matters. I would definitely support Arsenal for not taken the knee as long as they feel the meesage as been diluted and lost. All Life Matters as long as Action to protect life are been taken

    1. I honestly thought I was gonna find points to counter in the article but I just could not. Truth has been spoken. A good article Dan

    1. Hey mate
      Please don’t think Qpr are suggesting black lives are not important by not taking the knee
      You missed their point

        1. Actually research BLM (in america anyway) they really dont stand for black lives matter anymore, it’s all a political tool, the founders are admitted marxists, more people have died via riots looting etc of BLM than by the police since george floyd. There have been black kids killed by BLM rioters and they dont care, of course I think racism is abhorrent, but honestly BLM are a terrible organisation, they have earned 2.3 Billion in donations and done nothing with it but line there own pockets so far.

            1. The young man in Seattle, Washington and his father is taking the mayor to court because he assured everyone that the protests were all peaceful. Until protesters declared their “chop zone” and held up ambulances from entering their zone.
              That’s only one story, there are far too many similar stories here in the States.

              1. Durand 👏👏 yeah two teen black kids were shot in CHOP (Capitol hill autonomous zone) a place that only consisted of blm and antifa members, they have also burned down hundreds of millions of dollars worth of black owned businesses which makes zero sense. @RSH check out antony brian logan on youtube, he a black Republican on youtube who highlights a lot of these stories because they dont get global coverage because it doesn’t fit the media narrative

            2. Secoriea Turner to name one, theres been a multitude but I dont have time to fish them all out, watch the parents of this girl on youtube..

          1. The beginning of your post “Actually research BLM” gave you up. That sounds like “A lot of people” and “Many people” used by a certain celebrity to pre qualify a lie.
            BLM is not and was never an organization, entity or any particular group of people. You can repeat that lie till the end of time and it will remain such.

            1. What a seriously stupid non comment, there literally an organisation lol, with a website, founders, rhetoric etc.

  2. Sadly I believe racism and intolerance will always be with us no matter how hard we try to stamp it out

    The same England fans who register disgust at England players being abused are just as likely as those Bulgarian morons to do the same against an opposing player in a league match here

    I don’t know how it can be eradicated, I really don’t

    1. It will never be eradicated until the end of days. Its human nature to feel superior to another. Every race is racist its only whites who are always on the spotlight.

      From what I have observed whites and African countries (though not angels themselves) are the most welcoming people. You can go to any white or African country and make a life and fit in and don’t feel out of place at all (a person may encounter racism here and there but its only from few people and not the majority) but good luck trying that in places like Korea, Japan, India and the Middle East. You may live and make a life there but they will never consider you one of them.

      Even people within races have a caste system be it based on tribalism, social status, skin complexion or anything they will find (and they always do) to put each other down.

      The tendency of human superiority against another is prevalent even in homes and families let alone it being a global issue.

      The issues of racism and human rights are complex, not simple like most people think and the average Joes who in most cases are decent human beings and do not engage themselves in those issues are the least informed.

      It is up to the individual themselves how they wish to live their lives. What is the legacy they wish to leave. What is in their hearts. Love or hate?

        The awful issue of racism is a part of a moral superiority feeling that certain people of all religions, skin shades and nationalities do. And very much else, even as you wisely state, within families and this bigger, even than racism issue, is something that humans will only finally leave behind by evolving into something more noble, more intelligent, more deeply thinking. Ignorance is the mother of hateful thinking! Love of diversity and variety in humans all around us is a key part of the cure.

        As a man of seventy I well remember , with shame , the general racism that was all around me back in my childhood and for all the time since then too,even though less overt these days.
        It was endemic in those retrograde sad old times. I despised it even then and am infuriated by it and despise it even more in todays more knowledgeable world. Bigotry, hatred and intolerance of all kinds is so damaging to all humans, even those who fight it tooth and nail.

        The reason is that we all part of the same world and any bad things taint us all, even though we may try to pretend otherwise and think ourselves superior to others I freely admit to doing this too, in some ways, but it is disgraceful and disgusting all the same.

        1. Thank you Jon. I applaud you for looking at the comment and not the name behind the comment. I really appreciate that. It is a good lesson and you have set an example that I will follow from here onwards.

          You should not beat yourself for the past as the fact that it was all around you and yet you acknowledge it as a despicable thing and it’s something you condemn speak more of your as a person.

    1. I agree its up to individual themselves.

      Admn my reply to SueP has been deleted I think due to the change of email. I would like to use a new email with same username if possible. I would prefer not to use the old email.

  3. I like Les Ferdinand cos he scored at old trafford in 1999 nearly helping Arsenal to league title. BTW he is 100% correct that this is just goody 2 shoes PC, PR hypocritical gesturing which does nothing to help.

  4. Yes you’re right we need action. But I won’t support stopping it cause to me, it sounds like a reminder. Afterall, we are not paying for it. What’s there in kneeling for 5 secs to signify Black lives matters, does it spoil the game? Assuming that was included in the rule right from time, i guess there won’t be any complain. Though we need action also to back that up.

    1. Not about time or money mate
      It’s about are they doing it for the correct reasons?
      Be like the FA saying everyone wear this shirt saying don’t drink and drive
      Then a player is caught driving over the limit but is charged 250 pound only
      Which one would have spread the message more ?
      Wearing the shirt or banning him from football for two.years ?
      Which one would world talk about?
      Which one would kids respond too?

      1. And that’s why I said we also need action.
        Black lives matters goes beyond the pitch. Doing that send message to those at home watching from their comfort zone that black lives matters. It a message, it goes beyond the pitch.
        But we need actions also.

        PEACE OUT!!!

  5. I’m very proud of how players – especially individuals such as Rashford and Sterling – unified behind the message. The act was non-controversial among players and staff unlike American football and basketball where there is still, unfortunately, a lot of conservative resistance to the BLM movement.

    That said, Ferdinand makes an excellent point. Taking the knee was a symbol that has since lost its potency. Symbols are important, but so is action and I think the FA in coordination with clubs have been doing an excellent job at trying to eradicate racism from the game. Long may it continue in whatever form players, clubs, the FA and fans deem best.

    1. I’m from the States, but I only speak for myself and not anyone else. It’s not “conservative resistance” that is the issue, it’s how one group is demeaned or denigrated to prove the point of another. Isn’t that hypocrisy?
      The mistreatment of minorities is a real issue, but you don’t counteract that by mistreating others, do you? Racism is too easily thrown around by some in society, and the end result is it ceases to have real meaning, or truly identify real situations of racism.
      Personally I think Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. had it spot on when he said “Judge someone by the content of their character, and not the color of their skin.” Only love can conquer hate, and when someone chooses to hate those that hate them, the vicious cycle continues to repeat itself.
      Actions and getting involved is what matters, and taking a knee does little in my opinion; people are already aware, however it’s time to take the next step and get involved and make a difference; with neighbors, community, youth, so others where the light is, and a better way.

      1. Sean M I agree with your comments, only slightly disagree with the conservative resistance part. I agree with you completely about the loss of potency, and many leagues around the world seem to only pay lip service to the cause.

      2. Durand, Colin Kaepernick took a knee at the playing of the national anthem, on the advice of a veteran that it was more respectful than sitting. He has had his career destroyed because of his action to bring attention to the deaths of minorities at the hands of police. He also puts his money where his mouth is with his charity works.
        All should be equal before the law, but in so many countries including mine, that is not the case. As you would agree, for evil to triumph all that is required is good men to do nothing. It is up to all of us to pressure governments and ruling bodies regarding non discrimination.

        1. I agree with you Ozziegunner, but Kaepernick isn’t a good example to use. First, he was not a good quarterback, only had a good year and his stats aren’t good. Second, Miami Dolphins brought him in for a try-out, and he showed up in a Che Guevara T-shirt. An insult to people, as Che was a racist radical who referred to some minorities as “mongoloid;” not exactly representing inclusiveness or equality.
          I get your point and agree, but Kaepernick is a terrible example, especially when BLM has done nothing about the violence in Chicago and deaths of people they claim to represent.
          Their website says it all, it shows them to be more Marxist than anything, and not the type of “social change” that the media report them as representing.

      3. DURAND, YOU CONSTANTLY SO IMPRESS ME. I only wish I could meet you in person to buy you a drink and enjoy an in depth one to one conversation. What a pity we live in different countries!

        1. Jon always a pleasure to hear from you, and thank you for the kind words. Your comments always paint pictures and inspire responses; the true mark of a wordsmith.
          I merely comment on the truth as I know it; after much research and experience, though it be painful and hard to bear sometimes. I think we would agree that the harder the truth, the brighter the light (of knowledge) at the end.
          I would take you up on that drink Sir, but make mine a Bourbon if you will. I’ve told Ken I’m on my way to your wonderful country, but the pandemic derailed my travel this Summer.
          It’s merely the question of travel opening up, and crowds filling the Emirates again and I aim to see 1 game in person.

  6. Excellent subject and well written.
    I very much with the article and with Les Ferdinand.
    I might add, that I do have a problem with the BLM movement. I am totally for the fight against racism. It is needed and far from over.
    But the BLM movement is not just about racism. It is a radical left wing movement fighting capitalism and Western family culture among other things. And here I very much disagree, so every time I see a sports person supporting BLM, it gives me mixed feelings, and I wonder if he/she at all has an insight into what he/she is supporting.

    1. I fail to see how this is a fight against western family culture, I do see that black lives matter (as in black people are dying) and be aware that people will try to be reductive about what that means, please see that marginalistaion for what it is, an attempt to steer away from the truth.

      I take your point on the sports person understanding why they have to kneel, but the onus is on them to ask the questions and to educate themselves, so they can have the conversations with their peers and so on and so forth.

      1. @Armourist.
        If you take a little time to research, what BLM also stands for, you will se it is much more than “just” an anti racist agenda. BLM have been very quick and very clever to “steal” the show, so it is almost as if, you are against racism, you must be for BLM, and if you are not for BLM you are possibly a racist.
        I have a big problem with this. I like Football organisations, teams and individual footballers taking a stand against racism. I just don’t like them taking a stand for BLM, because of what BLM also stands for.

        1. Well said AndersS, you are absolutely right. All you have to do is go online and read about their platform, and what they stand for. Most people are against racism, but their complete agenda is rarely talked about, and they outline that themselves in their own words.
          People should educate themselves completely on the issue rather than cherry-picking a single point, thinking it encapsulates the movement, when it is far more radical.

        2. I don’t need to read what BLM stands for, players are taking the knee to support black people and show That Black Lives Matter, if you conflate the political organisation with the actual cause and focus on the organisation, then separate out the organisation and accept the players are kneeling for the parity of black lives.

          after all no liked emery but we didn’t stop supporting because of emery.

          1. @RSH literally google BLM nuclear family, they had this on there blm page until very recently they got rid of it, they are literally marxists. And before you say it’s fake news I literally saw in on the blm page a few months ago before they deleted it, they want to radically overhaul america.

      2. @Armourist more unarmed white people were killed in police custody last year than unarmed black in america, they just dont get news coverage but the statistics are all available online. 95% of black males are actually killed by other black males.

  7. Your position and Les Ferdinand’s position on this is understandable but disappointing… it’s saddening that you might have heard Micah Richards’s response and you still went this way, so to put this into a different context, and remove bias.

    Let me ask you this

    If you believe that something is wrong and you support the change needed to right that wrong, should you stop supporting the change because that wrong still happens? or do you keep fighting till that wrong is righted?

    We are only talking about football here, but this is happening in football because it is happening in life, you think Auba stops being black when the game stops, all that happens is he isn’t in the red & white anymore, but he is still black, he is still going to be abused for being black.

    What if black people stopped fighting racism because it’s still here, to effectively stop taking the knee, there’d be no Henry, No Wright, No Rocky, No PV4, etc… so no you don’t stop fighting because something isn’t going the way you want, in fact, you double down and keep going, not just for the fight against racism in football, or wider life, but for yourself in all the things that you want and do.

    As for the team taking the knee, it should carry on because starting the conversation, by people asking questions about why its happening, can change one or two minds and that change could make an immense difference to someone’s life. You don’t see it, so you cant imagine how much a difference it can make for one changed mind.

    As for UEFA, they are a bunch of old men who will pass on at some point, the fight for their sould is lost, but if the fight is fought now then, those that come afterwards might be different, then the fight fought now (taking the knee) would have made a difference, because more and more people are aware.

    Only when you fight as a team, both as players, fans, clubs, and as people can we achieve victory through harmony. So when it comes to this fight, please remember who you are, remember the shirt you wear, and what it stands for. Take the knee and show support.

    1. Is taking the knee fighting though ?
      Less Ferdinand/ QPR have caused discussion and conversation which wouldn’t have happened
      It’s made the likes of me question wait why is football actually doing to change things ?

      1. taking the knee is a small part of a bigger fight, so yes it is.

        the question you are asking about what football is doing as a result of what Les ferdinand said comes from the players taking a knee, so it appears to be working.

  8. Nothing will be achieved until we all sing ” all lives matter “.
    BLM is all politics just look at the demands and sponsors. Absolutely nothing to do with the common man.

    1. I’m sorry but when you say the common man do you include black men? cause most black men will tell you that BLM is important and for them, it isn’t about politics or sponsors, it’s about staying alive, feeling equal, and not being maligned in any other than by the strength or weakness of their character.

      the organization whilst representing at the forefront shouldn’t detract from the message that black lives matter, because they do and that’s what’s key here.

      to break down your all lives matter line which on the face of it sounds fair but really isn’t because it masks what’s actually happening.

      if you had a car and one tyre was flat and you went to fix that tyre does it mean that none of the rest of your tyres matter, or there is one in particular that needs attention because it is not on the same level as the others? BLM is trying to get black lives to the same level as white lives and when that happens, then yes we can all sing all lives matter.

      1. I know you are not missing the point but by not separating the essence of black lives matter from the political organisation in America then that is a mistake in my view

        Absolutely nothing wrong in finding a different ‘slogan’ to further the campaign. I always thought that football’s response – Racism: kick it out was a good one.

        I wrote earlier that racism and lack of tolerance go hand in hand and whilst I agree 100% that the lives of black people are extremely important there are other shameful actions against other groups in society too. None of it is very pleasant

        1. Find a different slogan why? Why does stating black lives matter make anyone feel uncomfortable? I think you are missing the point of the statement even though you claim not to. A minor discomfort for you seems to be worthy of discussion over killings of innocent black ppl. And again, you try to detract from this by claiming that other people have it bad to in society as if this isn’t known. But that is not the subject we are talking about…

          1. Think that’s harsh on Sue mate
            She’s saying and I agree that of course the mere words ‘ Black Lives matter ‘ is true and every decent person agrees to that
            Yet some hear that slogan and also think of the group. movement so it gets confusing
            So it’s easier to use another slogan which has same message but simply is saying we are not adverting an organisation we are not associated too
            If someone wants to use a different slogan to make it clear they are not supporting a political organisation then that’s their right mate
            hence , that’s what English Football has done

            1. It’s not harsh. My point remains. You are arguing over slogans and not the real issue. The fact that society has a problem with such a simple statement as Black Lives Matter is part of the problem. This IS political so it’s not necessary for there to be anything distinguishing between the slogan and the group. It’s a waste of time to even talk about this and it’s all about just saving face and making people be less up in arms about seeing people kneel, while the real issue continues to persist. Basically, this topic only serves to ease peoples feelings and make the topic of police brutality & racism more digestible, and more ignorable.

          2. I’m actually borderline insulted by your insinuation that I find the lives of black people in some way don’t matter.
            BLM are words that are powerful and meaningful. As I understand it, the organisation has a different agenda and is not only about this subject – hence my suggestion about Kick It Out which is football based and we are discussing it on those terms on this site

            What I am not prepared to accept is beIng told that the lives of other groups in society are a minor discomfort.

            Highbury Hero wrote a very insightful reply to something I posted earlier and it is definitely worth a read

            1. Perhaps you should be insulted because I stand by my post and you still don’t seem to get it. The more uncomfortable you feel the better in my opinion. If you already know the difference between the slogan, and the group, what exactly are you even arguing?

              1. Well the Prem have stopped using the slogan and I’m okay with that
                As when I hear Black Lives Matter I do think of the movement

              2. I’m arguing that the power of those words has been mixed up in a different agenda
                And you shouldn’t minimise either the terrible hatred and murder of others in society.
                I feel insulted that you think I’m too stupid to understand
                I’m not underestimating the insidious nature of racism or the institutional racism shown in some organisations but there was no need to rant at me on a subject that we largely agree on

  9. I think Les Ferdinand and the club’s owner had a valid point when making the comparison with”clap for the carers”,it made sense to stop it when it did,we don’t want people to start feeling like they have to or doing it just for the sake of it because others are still doing it,there is a stage when things need to evolve and further actions taken,but unlike the PL the EFL hasn’t given any directives to their clubs and it is up to each to decide and whatever they do it needs to be respected,not taking a knee doesn’t make someone a racist the same way anyone taking a knee is a non racist!

  10. I support BLM. I’m a Democrat (believe in Democracy), I’m a Socialist and Left Wing on most issues (ie LBGT+, abortion women’s rights, human rights, marijuana)

    I support the players in taking a Knee

    BLM are NOT an organisation. It is simply a position where people are sick and tired of Black people being murdered and exploited

    1. mate its a movement that was formed in 2013 , founded by three people who claim to protest against racial discrimination
      That’s called an organisation

  11. Beyond racism, there are other oppressive issues like bullying, domestic violence, etc. Are these of less importance? At what point do we get the EPL to also recognize and take action against these issues?

    Taking a knee is plain hypocrisy just create a facade of anti-racism. There are far stronger ways to send the anti-racism message other than the BLM knee crap.

  12. BLM is violent a political movement, and it’s not acceptable it that it’s become the twisted face of the fight against racism. I also hate the fact we now have it in sport.

    Asians have been treated worse than blacks in the America, so why aren’t we doing something for them?

      1. Native Americans have been treated worse than any ethnic group in America, THAT is a fact. You can trust me as a History major, or research the Trail of Tears, stealing their land, giving them blankets infected with small pox, many many disgusting examples of how American government treated the indigenous peoples. There are numerous Supreme Court cases attesting to their mistreatment.

    1. Glad it makes you upset then and glad the players keep taking knees. You should be uncomfortable, and you should think about police brutality and injustice against black ppl every time a football game kicks off. Attitudes like yours are the ones that need to go. And I dont think you actually believe your last statement for a second, or you are just very uneducated about basic American history.

    2. By your crooked logic,
      If we kill 100 Asians, blacks should not complain because we did them a big favor and only killed 99 of them.
      How nice of you.

  13. ‘Over there’ Black Lives Matter seems to stand for eradication of racial abuse. Well and good. I applaud the UK and the FA for their efforts in this respect.

    ‘Over here’– in the US, it is about reforming police departments who have, without much attention for the last century– been killing black men by way of extrajudicial killings. The officers involved are rarely punished for what amounts to unjustifiable homicide.

    BLM is the vehicle, the bullhorn a it were to press for the reform of police department policies, tactics taught in training cadets– even down to what type of candidates are sought as potential new officers.

    For instance, in Austin, Texas, the state’s capitol city– the city commissioners recently reapportioned $150M (approx £120M) from the police dept budget and designated tht to social services for its’ citizens– AND– for alternative public safety methodology. Instead of allowing the APD to purchase more military-level gear to be hardly ever deployed against their (quite peaceful) population.

    Cheers to Les Ferdinand. But the symbolism of UK/FA players taking a knee before football/soccer matches was– to this Yank– an amazing act of unity from the other side of the Atlantic.

    It really does matter. Like Black Lives Matter.


    FWIW? I’m a 64 year old, white, male– who has lived in the Southern US all his life. The part of this country most responsible for systemic racism.

    1. That’s interesting as I had the mistaken view that it was not a campaign group but something rather subversive

      1. I agree with you SueP and I’m wondering what happened to the “Kick it Out” campaign which I really feel is more applicable.
        Of course black lives matter but all lives matter whether black , white, yellow , red, brown, whatever colour skin you have.
        Racism has no place in football or any walk of life.

        1. explain how the statement “black lives matter” negates all lives mattering. The fact you have time to argue over semantics and a minor inconvenience really proves the point of the movement i feel. You worry about words, while many minorities are fearful of organizations that are supposed to be protecting citizens.

      2. BLM is a movement in essence.
        US professional sports aren’t open to subversive elements. The figurehead athlete in this movement is former NFL Quarterback Colin Kaepernick– who was the first pro athlete to kneel alone 3 years ago in protest of police killing black men unjustifiably. Kaepernick, a talented athlete was blackballed by the NFL. Another talented NFL player Eric Reid is similarly unemployed– because of his protesting before games by peacefully kneeling.

        Every US pro sports league have actually FOLLOWED the example set by the Premier League in kneeling prior to games. Our leagues hadn’t restarted when the PL did so.

        It was why I was so struck– that a European league would have shown the awareness to– what was at first thought controversial– then understood and accepted as a truth– here in the states over the course of only 6-8 weeks in May and June.

        Thanks to the protests in the US this Summer– every US pro league have instituted the right to kneel in protest pre-game.

        It’s actually been a watershed period in our country in the name of exposing social injustice.

        Nothing happens overnight– or in a year. Sometimes, as in my case– you wait almost a lifetime to see progress.

    2. “BREAKING: Ex-Officer Charged With Wanton Endangerment In Breonna Taylor Death.”

      Timely and on-topic. Breonna Taylor’s unjustified shooting case is one central to the BLM cause.

      Just now, today– one of the Louisville, Kentucky police officers have been charged in the death of Breonna Taylor. It has taken over a year for a Grand Jury to indict anyone for wrongdoing.

      Breonna Taylor’s shooting in her living room– as Louisville PD executed a ‘no-knock warrant’ to attempt a drug bust– for someone who didn’t live there.

      Perhaps Les Ferdinand will feel differently after hearing this?

      1. For a decent part of my life I believed the police were a force for good and in many cases they are.

        There are those that slip through the net and have a nasty agenda and destroy trust

        Seeing video footage of police brutality is sickening and made worse by those in authority who turn a blind eye to it

  14. When ozil criticize China for treatment of its minority (Muslims) club said we have nothing to do with it and Arsenal have nothing to do with political movements..we are just a football club so someone tell me what is black life matter ?? And why is our so called club involved in this movement?? Arsenal is the biggest hypocrite club ever, even though I support the club but I don’t agree with the way they conduct them selves they will do anything for money.

  15. Mohsan it was beneficial for Arsenal to distance itself from Mesut comments . It was essential for Arsenal to protect their China business even if internally they may have been in agreement with Mesut comments.

    It does not help also that islam is not in favour by many in the west.

    Similarly it is beneficial for Arsenal to involve itself with this movement. It’s mostly about the image. Obviously Arsenal will be portryed in a bad image if they were the only ones refusing to join the cause. And considering Arsenal does not have many friends in the media it would have given them yet another reason to attack.

    The Arsenal which fans follow and love and the Arsenal as a business company are two different things. Arsenal as a business just like all other businesses will do what’s beneficial and stay clear of anything that will harm their business and profitability.

    If you put it that way, then there is no company under the sun which isn’t hypocrite.

    1. HH, by way of endorsement of your final sentence(and much else besides in your fine post!) I have long been a voice in the wilderness in saying that hypocrisy is a natural and normal partof our shared human condition, The only difference is of course the DEGREE of hypoocrisy in each of us.

      We should be more open in recognising our OWN hypocrisy and fallibility and then we might, just hopefully might, be more tolerant of it of others.

      1. Thank you again Jon. I couldn’t agree more with your last sentence as well. It’s amazing how tolerant of others makes one very successful in their personal and social relationships. And as you have correctly stated one can be tolerant of others only when they acknowledge their own shortcomings.

  16. Ugh. If I had a dollar for how many times Ive read or heard someone say, “we need to stop talking” or “kneeling” and “take action” and then utterly fail to propose any action (resolution) at all, I’d be a wealth magnate. But hey, that’s better than storming the streets and destroying ppls businesses, I suppose.

    Long story short, BLM—no matter how ridiculously far the actual self-serving organization has taken things politically and violently—started on the basis of police brutality. The action that would be required to change things is generally reform in the police departments and more specifically to adjust the far-too-lenient law that allows officers to use lethal force when they suspect the threat of a weapon and bodily harm. Police have one of the most dangerous jobs in the world, and the acceptance of the job comes w acceptance of the risk. For one, they should be paid more. For two, they should use their weapons to disarm and disable someone only UNLESS the suspect has a gun and therefore there is a reasonable concern for imminent death. There are a ridiculous number of police killings (against all races) in America when the suspect has a knife or a baseball bat or some blunt object, and the police gun him down w 50 bullets (exaggeration? not always). Police being legally allowed to use lethal force upon a reasonable concern for bodily harm is the law at the bottom of many of these unnecessary deaths. Sure, there are circumstances of it being nighttime, a chaotic scene, etc—and you can argue that in court—but being able to kill someone bc of a perceived threat of bodily harm is absurd. Shoot to disable the suspect and only shoot lethally when the suspect has a gun (in his hand), which would be a reasonable perception of imminent death. And, there need to be stricter laws on “the perception of a gun”. I digress though…

    Fewer knees. Fewer sermons. More proposals. More ideas.

    But anyway, hate to see politics on here. Back to football, please.

  17. It comes down to what you believe the taking the knee is in relation to and where you are going for your news on the issue.
    If it is blm, the concept of eliminating racism in our societies, then great.
    If it is blm the organization or movement, then you are taking a political stance in the US elections in support of Marxist socialism, the Democratic party and the election of Joe Biden the man who is responsible for the 1994 Crime Bill that has resulted in the incaseration and murder of thousands of black men nd teenagers in the US. I mean even Bill Clinton in 2016 came out publically and said he regretted passing the Crime Bill, but Biden has doubled down on it as he and his family have profited from the death of thousands during the civil war in the Ukraine.
    In the US very few people are watching sports now because of the kneeling and in fact fans have been booing the players on their teams that take the knee. Basically get woke go broke.
    At the same time there have been 4 to 5 months of rioting across the US typically in Democrat run cities or states.
    There are 2 sides to every coin and this entire situation is so complicated with so many different narratives being told that it is best just not to get involved. Because either way you are going to annoy people.

  18. Any and all gestures to support the BLM group are ridiculous and pointless. If you are not a criminal you don’t need to be worried about police killing you. Most black people just don’t want understand facts and truths. In America 8000 black men are arrested every day. Why? Deal with the honest issues, not excuses.

    1. The thing with the police targeting black men in the US is actually not even true. The statistics don’t even bear it out. People will say it is not the numbers but the numbers relative to the population size, but again you also have to look at the crime rate by population and that explains the numbers.
      And as we dig deeper into a lot of the killings, we see the news reports are now telling us the full story. Body cam footage from the George Floyd death shows he was high on drugs and hard been telling the police he had covid, and other things while resisting arrest. He had also started saying he couldn’t breath when he was sat inside the police car and that he wanted to lay down on the ground as he threw himself out of the police car.

      The recent Taylor case, the grand jury evidence that resulted in the case being dismissed suggests that her boyfriend, a drug dealer, fired at the police and she was shot in the crossfire. It was not the story reported in the news of her being shot by the police while she was asleep in bed.

      In the Jacob Blakr case, it is now being reported that he had basically car jacked a woman, taken her keys and was trying to drive off with her child in the car. So he was effectively shot trying to kidnap a child..

      We are also not told or see the same level of extreme rioting after the shootout that happened at a funeral in Chicago a month or so ago or the countless numbers of African American men, women and children killed everyday by other African Americans in numbers far far exceeding those killed by the police. We are also not told of the black teenagers peppered with over 100 bullets for driving close to the CHAS when BLM took over the Seattle downtown. We weren’t also told of the rapes and other shootings that happened in the CHAS. Or the 30 plus people, mainly black that have been killed by BLM rioters since George Floyd’s death.

      I was all for the protests until I stumbled across NeoUnrealist, AxeTruth and Tim Pool on Bitchute and YouTube and saw all the video footage and local news stories that they cover to see just how much the major news outlets are not covering to the point that you are left wondering if they are just now blatantly lying to us all. And this is why I would rather our players stick with the kick racism out of football campaign we have had and has been very successful in the UK than get themselves involved in the politics of the US which they don’t have full information on or fully understand. Especially when Ozil can be attacked by the club no less for speaking out again the Chinese government locking muslims up in concentration/forced labour camps. Something even the BBC recently pressed the Chinese embasidor to the UK about. And there’s no BLM proesting outside of the Chinese embassy in London over the racism and forced evictions of black workers and students in China in April or so when China seemed to be getting a second wave of covid and they started blaming it on black people living in China

    2. It is not even that black people don’t want to understand facts or truths, because there are a lot of blacks in America that are opposed to BLM and actually are supporting Donald Trump and seeing the truth about the Democrat Party. Look up Blexit. Look up #Walkaway.
      Pick up Dinesh Desusa’s book “The Big Lie”. Many people especially African Americans vote for the Democrats because they don’t know their country’s political history.
      Democrats were
      1) the party of the kkk
      2) the party that praised Hitler’s “progressive social engineering”
      3) the party of the Jim Crow laws
      4) the party of the “progressive social engineering” known as eugenics and has repeatedly funded planned parenthood whose founder talked about stopping the African American population from growing
      5) the party that voted in opposition to the JFKs Civil Rights law just before he was assassinated. The law that gave African Americans the legal rights to vote in the 1960s. In fact JFK only got that law as far it got before his assassination because, he got the full support of the Republicans. Indeed it was only one Republican representative from Texas who voted with the Democrats in opposition to the civil rights law.
      6) it was the Bill Clinton and Joe Biden 1994 Crime Bill that has reulted in African Americans being locked up in jail
      7) it was kamala Haris who refused to release black prisoners because she wanted free labor for the companies that were lobbying her
      8) we talk about racism in America now, but Obama, the first black president of the US, did absolutely nothing to help African Americans and he in 8years in office did nothing to get the criminal justice reform that would have helped African Americans. No! It was Trump meeting with Kim Kardashian that gave rise to the criminal justice reforms and second chance program that is helping black Americans.
      But we are told nothing about any of this.

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